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Malcolm Turnbull overthrows Tony Abbot: good news for climate?



To lose one Australian Prime Minister may be regarded as misfortune, to lose three in four years looks like carelessness. Labor’s Julia Gillard fell to her Labor rival and predecessor Kevin Rudd, who in turn lost the general election to Liberal Tony Abbott, who was ousted yesterday by his rival Liberal Malcolm Turnbull.

Malcolm Turnbull is a former lawyer, journalist, investment banker and venture capitalist. He was briefly Minister for Environment and Water in the Howard Government in 2007 and supported the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme in 2009. Having defeated Abbott in the Liberal leadership ballot he was sworn in to become Australia’s 29th prime minister.

Turnbull has attacked his predecessor Abbott’s record on the environment, and has called for a “strong, credible policy framework” to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

In an opinion piece in 2010 he said, “Climate change is the ultimate long term problem. We have to make decisions today, bear costs today so that adverse consequences are avoided, dangerous consequences, many decades into the future.”

Compare that to Tony Abbott’s 2009: “The argument [behind climate change] is absolute crap.”


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