Here's Andrew Bolt interviewing (or, more accurately, sand-bagging) Australian scientist Tim Flannery, the point being to "expose" Flannery's "alarmist" statements re AGW:
Bolt: Should we also have nuclear power plants?
Flannery: In Australia I don't think so. We've got such a great load of assets in the renewable area that I don't think there's an argument here that they are ever going to be economic.
Bolt: Four years ago you did. What changed your mind?
Flannery: No, I never did. I've always had the same argument.
Bolt: No, no, no. Here's your quote: "Over the next two decades Australians could use nuclear power to replace all our coal-fired power plants. We would then have a power infrastructure like France and in doing so we would have done something great for the world." That was your quote.
Flannery: I don't recall saying that at all.
Bolt: You wrote it. You wrote it in The Age. There it is, highlighted.
Flannery: Well ,very good.
Bolt: That's the point, you know, you make these claims and when people confront you, you walk away from them.
Well, since the article in question is from 2006, it isn't surprising that Mr. Flannery should have forgotten his own words. In any case, here's the quote in context; its quite consistent with Flannery's current position:
Australians are the worst per capita emitters of polluting greenhouse gases on Earth, and Victoria is home to the most polluting coal-fired power station in the world. Fifty-six per cent of the greenhouse gases you generated this morning boiling the jug or taking the kids to school will still be in the atmosphere in a century's time, blighting the lives of our children's children. That's quite a moral issue.
Over the next two decades, Australians could use nuclear power to replace all our coal-fired power plants. We would then have a power infrastructure like that of France, and in doing so we would have done something great for the world, for whatever risks go with a domestic nuclear power industry are local, while greenhouse gas pollution is global in its impact.
This, I fear, is not what is intended. Instead, many will want Australia to have its cake and eat it too, which will mean keeping the coal-fired power plants and supplementing them with a bit of nuclear. And exports of both coal and uranium would, of course, be pursued as vigorously as possible.
Where would such a policy lead us? Within a few decades, we could be living in a world undergoing substantial destabilisation of its environmental and political structures. And that world would be awash with Australian uranium capable of making the most destructive weapons ever devised.
What's the way out of this predicament? It's simple, and it begins with asking a question: is it right to enrich ourselves by degrading our children's future? If your answer is no, then certain actions must follow.
First, you would burn as little fossil fuel as possible. That might mean buying a smaller car, or asking your electricity provider for green power. It might mean buying a solar hot-water heater, or even learning more about how electricity is generated and how we use it. If everyone from the Prime Minister down acted in this way, we would need no more power plants - coal or nuclear - because the demand for electricity would drop. So would our petrol use, and our politicians would, of course, take the lead in emergency efforts to reduce greenhouse gas pollution internationally.
But in Bolt's hands, with a few snips, no becomes yes, up becomes down.