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One less foot-dragger on climate for Harper to be buddies with.

The people in Australia have spoken, and they have spoken rather emphatically:

Official figures from the Australian Electoral Commission showed Labor well ahead with more than 70 percent of the ballots counted. An Australian Broadcasting Corp. analysis showed that Labor would get at least 81 places in the 150-seat lower house of Parliament a clear majority.

And what will be the major impact globally? Why, it appears Australia now believes we need more then “aspirational targets” to go at climate change, but meaningful targets: of the biggest changes will be in Australia’s approach to climate change. Rudd has nominated the issue as his top priority, and promises to immediately sign the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions.

This would also probably mean a withdrawal of Australia from the group of countries who reject hard caps on GHG emissions. That also means that Canada is now indeed alone amongst the Commonwealth in opposing such caps, and it means Harper now only has George Dubya Bush as a fellow resister to hard targets amongst the industrialized world. What a lovely couple they make.

I’m sure John Baird will try to spin this somehow as being nothing big, but this is indeed a big blow for the Cons on the world stage as it comes to the environment, and at home domestically.

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