Trillion dollar rescue packages for banks make small change of investments to stop global warming, according to the Western Australian Sustainable Energy Association Inc. (WA SEA), the business chamber for sustainable energy industries in WA.
The US Treasury will create a fund worth more than $US700 billion to buy back a large proportion of the bad debt in the US mortgage market. Similar action around the globe to shore up poor decisions in investment markets has added another $US200 billion from Central Banks.
US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said a "bold" move was needed to restore the financial system's health.
"There is no doubt the mortgage crisis needs a substantial response, but a "bold" move is also required to stop global warming, which is a threat of far greater scale and depth than the credit crisis," says Dr Ray Wills, Chief Executive of WA SEA.
"Rescuing banks has outstripped any investment to stop greenhouse gas emissions by an order of magnitude. Governments around the world are set to spend large amounts of taxpayer money to deal with poor financial decisions by the world's banks, but are failing to act decisively with global warming set to do more damage to the world's economy than a mortgage crisis."
"Global investment in this one credit crisis will be more than 5 times the amount Nicholas Stern's "Review on the Economics of Climate Change" said was required to fight global warming," notes Dr Wills.
"These same banks own an extensive array of assets - governments must tie rescue packages to place obligations on those banks to invest more sustainably, so that the assets they control are geared to also do more to reduce greenhouse gas emissions," says Dr Wills.
"Furthermore, the credit crisis is beginning to spread out through the financial system to impact on share price and market stability in many publicly traded companies. For example, the Australian stock market is now down almost one third on its record high last November, with the fall wiping nearly $600 billion off the value of local shares. It is clear measures from governments will benefit banks and companies alike - governments can use these measures to gain better cooperation and support from asset owners to deal simultaneously with the need to build more sustainable economies, to improve energy efficiency and move to emissions free energy sources," says Dr Wills.
WA Sustainable Energy Association Inc. (WA SEA) Media Release - 21 September 2008
Dr Ray Wills 0430 365 607
1. The Western Australian Sustainable Energy Association Inc. (WA SEA) is a chamber of businesses variously promoting, developing and/or adopting sustainable energy technologies and services that minimise the use of energy through sustainable energy practices and maximise the use of energy from sustainable sources. WA SEA is supported by a growing membership of 190 industry members from a diversity of businesses. www.wasea.com.au.