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NSW Coastal Conference report: Political stance of any persuasion has no place in a scientific forum


Councillors Maureen Nathan, and Phil Constable represented Eurobodalla Shire Council at the 2018 NSW Coastal Conference which was held on the 7 to 9 November 2018 in Merimbula and they present their delegate’s report on the Conference at tommorrow's (Feb 25th 2019) Ordinary Council meeting. The NSW Coastal Conference was held in Merimbula on the 7 to 9 November 2018 and the pair noted in their report that it was a Coastal Council Conference where the ‘climate change mantra’ dominates. In the background to their report it states "We were very concerned with the tone set with the political messaging set in place in the presentation of the keynote speaker Dr Kathleen McInnes. Political stance of any persuasion has no place in a scientific forum. "Dr McInnes spoke on the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report with her role as lead author on the Special Report on the Ocean and Cyrosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC). This report outlined the role of the ocean and cryosphere in climate change. It is clear that she has developed projections for impact and adaptation assessments." "She stated that this is a new methodology relating detection and attribution of risk by modelling." The councillors report background continued "Until they are provable, we cannot accept them as science. She however set the tone of that part of the conference. The political messaging continued with Sarah Barker of Minter Ellison who spoke very persuasively on Climate Change through a Finance and Liability risk lens. She quoted the G20 Recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures June 2017 report." "According to her: “International financial and insurance institutions are now using ‘climate language’ in contracts which affect us all. They now force ‘Mitigation against climate events’ of 80 years of events”. Borrowings, mortgages and insurance policies will be more expensive as Larry Fink’s BlackRock opinion becomes a market driver affecting all credit ratings, including that of sub-national governments and individuals." The background to their report also states "It is interesting that subsequent questions Councillor Nathan posed about Larry Fink away from the conference, indicated that her position is not as pervasive as she would have the audience believe. She talked of economic opportunities in green and climate bonds." The report author comments "In contrast, the third keynote speaker Dr Maria Byrne, gave an objective assessment of marine heat waves and ocean acidification on the symbiotic relationships of zooxanthella which result in bleached corals. She explained reefs require 10 years to recover from bleaching, and the different events in the far North and Centre of the Great Barrier Reef. She also pointed out that the southern section of the reef has NOT suffered, something that has not been publicised." The recommendation will be that the Delegates Report from Councillors Maureen Nathan and Phil Constable on the 2018 NSW Coastal Conference be received and noted.


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