Australia threatens the world as a major greenhouse gas (GHG) polluter but also kills 75,000 people globally each year via toxic pollutants from the burning of its world-leading coal exports. Below is an Open Letter sent to journalists of the ABC (Australia’s equivalent of the UK BBC) over ABC censorship of horrendous, Australia-complicit, Australian and global air pollution deaths from carbon fuel burning, now projected to extend to India via the huge, Australia-approved Adani coal mine.
Open Letter to journalists of the ABC (look-the-other-way Australia’s equivalent of the endlessly censoring UK BBC; see “Censorship by the BBC”: https://sites.google.com/site/censorshipbythebbc/ ).
Dear ABC journalist,
On 2017-07-01 as a socially-concerned, humanitarian, 5-decade-career scientist I attempted to post the following humane, science-informed and documented comment on an ABC Radio National Saturday Extra segment relating to the Australia-approved proposed gigantic Adani coal mine, Indian coal use and the energy challenge: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/saturdayextra/indias-energy-challenge/8668578 . My comment was completely censored by the ABC (a common occurrence).
CENSORED COMMENT: “Several key points were not raised in this otherwise useful interview:
(1) Taking methanogenic land use into account and considering the Global Warming Potential of methane on a 20 year time frame, the annual per capita greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution in “tonnes CO2-equivalent per person per year” is 2.1 for India as compared to the world average of 8.9 and 52.9 for Australia (or 116 if including Australia’s huge GHG-generating exports) (see Gideon Polya, “Revised Annual Per Capita Greenhouse Gas Pollution For All Countries – What Is Your Country Doing?”, Countercurrents, 6 January, 2016: https://countercurrents.org/polya060116.htm ).
(2) A multi-author 2017 paper in the prestigious UK medical journal The Lancet estimates 1.1 million Indian deaths annually from ambient (outdoor) air pollution, notably from fine carbon particulates (PM2.5). Assuming that 50% of Indian ambient air pollution is from coal burning it is estimated that pollutants from the burning of Adani-exported Australian coal will eventually kill 35,000 Indians annually and 1.4 million Indians over the lifetime of the coal mine (see Gideon Polya, “Latest Lancet data imply that the Adani Australian coal project will kill 1.4 million Indians”, Countercurrents, 21 April 2017: https://countercurrents.org/2017/04/21/latest-lancet-data-imply-adani-australian-coal-project-will-kill-1-4-million-indians/ ).
(3) 7 million people die from air pollution each year (the World Health Organization), this including 200,000 Americans, 10,000 Australians, 9,400 Londoners and 75,000 people globally due to pollutants from the burning of Australian coal exports (see “Stop air pollution deaths”: https://sites.google.com/site/300orgsite/stop-air-pollution-deaths ). END CENSORED COMMENT.
This sort of censorship of the horrendously deadly consequences of carbon fuel burning amounts to what the Americans call “depraved indifference” towards Australians, Indians and Humanity by the ABC. Evidently for “balance”, Saturday Extra did, however, publish a provocatively forthright anonymous reader comment that read in part: “Anthropogenic climate destabilisation deniers and enemies of renewable energy are always welcome at the ABC, the ‘Australian’ of the airwaves.”
ABC “depraved indifference” towards Indians and Humanity I can understand – after all as racist UK lackeys White Australians were complicit in the 2 century Indian Holocaust and Indian Genocide in which an estimated 1,800 million Indians died avoidably from deprivation under the genocidally racist British, this culminating in the 1942-1945 WW2 Bengali Holocaust in which Britain with crucial and sustained Australian complicity deliberately starved 6-7 million Indians to death for strategic reasons. Today, 17 million people die avoidably from deprivation each year in the Developing World (minus China) on Spaceship Earth with the rich First Worlders including Australia in charge of the flight deck. 10 billion mostly non-Europeans will die this century from a worsening Climate Genocide unless it is requisitely addressed (see Gideon Polya, “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950”, that includes a succinct history of every country and is now available for free perusal on the web: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ ; Gideon Polya, “Australia And Britain Killed 6-7 Million Indians In WW2 Bengal Famine”, Countercurrents, 29 September, 2011: https://countercurrents.org/polya290911.htm ; Gideon Polya, “As UK Lackeys Or US Lackeys Australians Have Invaded 85 Countries (British 193, French 80, US 70)”, Countercurrents, 9 February, 2015: https://countercurrents.org/polya090215.htm ; ; “Climate Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/climategenocide/ ).
However ABC “depraved indifference” towards Australian air pollution deaths, while explicable in terms of a cowardly and craven ABC, is but the tip of an horrendous iceberg and takes Australia to a very dark place that demands public outcry. Thus in contrast to only 3 deaths ever in Australia due to jihadi terrorist psychopaths, 85,000 Australians die preventably each year from a variety of causes, the breakdown (involving some overlaps) including (1) 26,000 annual Australian deaths from adverse hospital events, (2) 17,000 obesity-related Australian deaths, (3) 15,500 smoking-related Australian deaths, (4) 10,000 carbon burning pollution-derived Australian deaths, (5). 4,000 avoidable Indigenous Australian deaths, (6). 5,600 alcohol-related Australian deaths, (7) 2,100 Australian suicides, (8) 1,400 Australian road deaths, (9) 630 Australian opiate drug-related deaths with 570 linked to US Alliance restoration of the Taliban-destroyed Afghan opium industry, and (10) 300 Australian homicides (80 being of women killed domestically) (see Gideon Polya, “Review: “Disruptive Asia. Asia’s Rise And Australia’s Future” – Exceptionalist Australia & Resurgent Asia”, Countercurrents, 10 July 2017: https://countercurrents.org/2017/07/10/review-disruptive-asia-asias-rise-and-australias-future-exceptionalist-australia-resurgent-asia/ ). Poor fellow my country, look-the-other-way Australia.
Yours sincerely, Dr Gideon Polya, Melbourne.
cc MPs, media & activists. END LETTER.
Some final comments.
Science-based risk management, that is crucial for societal safety, successively involves (a) accurate information , (b) scientific analysis based on the critical testing of potentially falsifiable hypotheses, and (c) informed systemic change to minimize risk. However this rational risk management protocol is typically perverted by censorship, self-censorship, intimidation, lying by omission, and lying by commission that de-rail the primary requirement of accurate reportage. Lying by omission is far, far worse than lying by commission because the latter at least admits the possibility of refutation and debate.
Australia is among the world’s worst countries in terms of invasion of other countries as a US lackey, climate change inaction and annual per capita greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution of the one common atmosphere and ocean of all nations. Australia’s ABC (Australia’s equivalent of the UK BBC) is but one of a plethora of neoliberal Western Mainstream media that abuse their consumers with fake news by lying by omission (see Gideon Polya, “Australian ABC And UK BBC Fake News Through Lying By Omission”, Countercurrents, 2 May 2017: https://countercurrents.org/2017/05/02/australian-abc-and-uk-bbc-fake-news-through-lying-by-omission/ and Gideon Polya, “Mainstream media: fake news through lying by omission”, Global Research, 2 April 2017: http://www.globalresearch.ca/mainstream-media-fake-news-through-lying-by-omission/5582944 ).
It is now too late to avoid a catastrophic plus 2C temperature rise but we must do everything we can to make the world “less bad” for future generations. What can decent people do? Decent people who care for their children and future generations must (a) inform everyone they can by penetrating the Mainstream Media Wall of Silence, and (b) urge and apply Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against all those people, politicians, countries and corporations disproportionately complicit in the worsening Climate Genocide that, unless requisitely addressed, is set to wipe out much of Humanity and the Biosphere this century (see “Divest from fossil fuels”: https://sites.google.com/site/300orgsite/divest-from-fossil-fuels and “Climate Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/climategenocide/ ).
Dr Gideon Polya taught science students at a major Australian university for 4 decades. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, most recently a huge pharmacological reference text “Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds” (CRC Press/Taylor & Francis, New York & London , 2003). He has published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” (G.M. Polya, Melbourne, 2007: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com/ ); see also his contributions “Australian complicity in Iraq mass mortality” in “Lies, Deep Fries & Statistics” (edited by Robyn Williams, ABC Books, Sydney, 2007: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/ockhamsrazor/australian-complicity-in-iraq-mass-mortality/3369002#transcript
) and “Ongoing Palestinian Genocide” in “The Plight of the Palestinians (edited by William Cook, Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2010: http://mwcnews.net/focus/analysis/4047-the-plight-of-the-palestinians.html ). He has published a revised and updated 2008 version of his 1998 book “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History” (see: http://janeaustenand.blogspot.com/ ) as biofuel-, globalization- and climate-driven global food price increases threaten a greater famine catastrophe than the man-made famine in British-ruled India that killed 6-7 million Indians in the “forgotten” World War 2 Bengal Famine (see recent BBC broadcast involving Dr Polya, Economics Nobel Laureate Professor Amartya Sen and others: http://www.open.edu/openlearn/history-the-arts/history/social-economic-history/listen-the-bengal-famine ; Gideon Polya: https://sites.google.com/site/drgideonpolya/home ; Gideon Polya Writing: https://sites.google.com/site/gideonpolyawriting/ ; Gideon Polya, Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gideon_Polya ) . When words fail one can say it in pictures – for images of Gideon Polya’s huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: http://sites.google.com/site/artforpeaceplanetmotherchild/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/gideonpolya/ .