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Science and Technology - Climate

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Tags: Climate Change, State Budget

Dr WOODRUFF - Minister, as Minister for Science, what would you say are the key findings of the sixth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report just released?

Mr FERGUSON - Dr Woodruff, the Government would, through the Minister for Climate Change which the Premier has recently indicated he will be asking Minister Jaensch to take on that responsibility. He will be our spokesman as portfolio responsibility in that area. I will not be offering opinions because I am not to do that as a minister, but I have no fear nor favour in backing in our policies and our review of the legislation which will lead to a review of, for example, our timeline to get to zero emissions. I am entirely in favour of the way in which the Premier's been approaching that and will continue to be in favour, no doubt, under Minister Jaensch.

Dr WOODRUFF - To the question, I am not asking about Government policy or anything about that, I am just asking about the science. What would you say are the key findings of the sixth IPCC report?

Mr FERGUSON - I am not a contemporary expert on that paper. I would not attempt to summarise the IPCC findings. That is not my role.

Dr WOODRUFF - Did you read the summary for policy makers?

Mr FERGUSON - Dr Woodruff, I have not read the report and I do not intend to any time soon. I am aware of the reporting of it and it seems to be a wake up call for the industrial community, in particular those nations that are the biggest emitters and so Australia plays a role in that.

If you are trying to maybe test where I am at on this -

Dr WOODRUFF - No, I just want to know if you have read it.

CHAIR - I think you have had a couple of goes at coming at it from different ways to try and make it relevant to this portfolio, Dr Woodruff.

Dr WOODRUFF - The Minister for Science, Chair, it is entirely appropriate to ask whether the biggest report on the planet that has specifically condensed summaries for policy makers has been looked at by our Minister for Science.

CHAIR - The biggest report on the planet is a subjective assessment from you, Dr Woodruff.

Dr WOODRUFF - It is my subjective assessment.

CHAIR - It is your subjective assessment and I am now subjectively moving onto Mr Tucker because the minister's answered your question.

Dr WOODRUFF - When the heat gets too hot, move on.

CHAIR - The minister's answered your question twice.

Mr FERGUSON - I am trying to be polite and courteous. You are in the wrong output and you are with the wrong minister. I am a big believer in the scientific method. I am a science teacher who taught it to my kids. I have been the fire minster and have seen the climate impacts on the bushfires in our state. You do not have a problem with me, Dr Woodruff, in relation to science on this, but I also am humble enough to know I am not the expert on this.

CHAIR - Thank you, Minister.