Zero is good, but Morrison fails Australia with no new 2030 target for COP26

October 27, 2021 at 12:10 am 2 comments

Climate advocacy Community groups and organisations have welcomed the announcement today by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Net Zero, but have strongly criticised not increasing Australia’s low 2030 target that was set by Prime Minister Abbott in 2015.

Climate Action Moreland put out a Joint statement of 40 climate advocacy organisations in response to the Federal Government’s net zero emissions announcement by Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor.

“Australia is taking a technology not taxes meet and cheat projection to Glasgow, which is another way of climate delay and denial while expanding fossil fuel production,” said Climate Action Moreland Convenor, John Englart.

Morrison said in his press conference “You will be supported by our data projection that will see us exceed our 2030 target with emissions reduction of up to 35% by 2030. We will keep our commitment, though, when it comes to our pledge that we made, and took to the last election of 26 to 28%, but we will meet it, and we will beat it. And we’ll beat it with emissions reductions we believe about the 35%.” said Morrison.

But the work of all the states will see Australia achieve 37-42% emissions reduction, according to scientific modelling and projections by Climateworks Australia associated with Monash University. The Federal Government is doing little effective climate action according to modelling on 2030 climate targets.

“This is the right plan for Australia – to summarise the outcome from it, which we’ll see in the plan, Australians $2,000 better off on average in 2050 compared with no Australian action.” says Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor at the press conference.

“Acting fast with renewables with strong 2030 targets showed citizens would be $5000 better off according to Business Council of Australia report.” said John Englart. 

Zero is good.  Now we need to slash emissions in the most important decade of our lives

We welcome the Federal Government’s commitment to a target of net zero greenhouse gas pollution and now, to achieve this target, we expect the government to drive the slashing of emissions this decade. 

In the face of increasingly dangerous global warming, we all want a future where we can continue to enjoy life in this beautiful country. 

The lion’s share of pollution from coal, gas and oil needs to be cut this decade if we are to avoid the catastrophic impacts of climate change. The Morrison’s Government’s announcement today doesn’t detail how this will be done. 

At a minimum, the Australian Federal Government needs to match the 2030 targets of the United States, the United Kingdom and trading partners like the European Union and Japan. This will require a commitment for Australia to at least halve our climate emissions by 2030.  

Getting to net zero emissions means we need immediate, active plans to boost the renewable energy transformation, to shift to renewably-powered transport, to protect and restore our forests and bushlands, and to end public subsidies for fossil fuel industries. 

Regional and urban communities can share in the opportunities we have as a nation. We can position ourselves as a global superpower of renewable energies and clean industries.  We have natural advantages that are the envy of the world. 

Credible action on climate will safeguard our communities, protect our health from climate impacts, and deliver an economic and jobs boon for Australia. 

Failure to act will leave communities and the places we love exposed to increasingly disastrous weather events, such as droughts, heatwaves, megafires and storms.  It will also leave us lagging further behind in the global race for new industries based on renewable energy.  

Of particular concern with the announcement today is that the details of the deal the federal National Party obtained from the Liberal Party are not transparent.  It would be deeply counter-productive if approaches have been agreed to extend the use of fossil-fuels, or support further destruction of forests and bushland. 

We are pleased the Morrison Government is recognising the desire of the millions of Australians we support and represent to set a long term net-zero target. We look forward to working with the Federal Government, and all federal decision makers, to put in place the rapid reductions in climate pollution needed for a healthy and prosperous future. 

Other Statements

This is not a plan, this is a scam – Smart Energy Council

“Scott Morrison’s climate change strategy is not a plan, it’s a scam,” said John Grimes, Chief Executive of the Smart Energy Council – the peak, independent body for Australia’s solar, energy storage and smart energy industry.

“Scott Morrison is claiming credit for emissions reductions policies they tried repeatedly to axe and he is banking emissions reductions from policies that don’t work or won’t happen, like carbon capture and storage and fossil fuel hydrogen.”

“The Liberal National Government tried to abolish the Renewable Energy Target, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and just last month gutted ARENA by allowing it to fund fossil fuel projects.” said John Grimes.

“Just last week in Parliament, Resources Minister Keith Pitt mocked thousands of solar and battery storage workers in the multi-billion dollar industry, erroneously suggesting solar panels don’t work at night, as though batteries haven’t been invented.”

“This scam plan is an extraordinary lost economic opportunity. Trillions of dollars of investment is ready to land in Australia, just waiting for clear policy direction. Fantasy investments in gas, carbon capture and storage and fossil fuel hydrogen is not a plan.”

“If anything, this is a plan to miss out on trillions of dollars of investment.”

“The Smart Energy Council calls on the Morrison Government to join our major export and security partners in committing to at least 50% reductions in emissions by 2030.”

ACOSS CEO Cassandra Goldie on the Liberal/National agreement and the Commonwealth’s position for Glasgow:

“ACOSS welcomes the long overdue bi-partisan commitment to a net zero emission goal by 2050 and aspiration to do a little more by 2030, this is an important shift. But it is deeply disappointing to see a closed-door deal that avoids a commitment to stronger 2030 targets and does little to ensure people on low-incomes, impacted workers and communities are supported to drive this change, and benefit directly from the transition to clean economy.

“Technology focus alone will not ensure that people on low incomes are Abel to enjoy the multiple benefits from the transition to clean economy. We need a plan that puts at its centre the practical policies that will improve the lives of people facing disadvantage and transform our regions and economy to drive down emissions in a fast and fair way.

“We should not be investing in costly and polluting technology like carbon capture and storage. The Government should for example be investing in energy efficiency and solar in low-income homes. This would reduce energy bills by $1,200 a year, create thousands of jobs, and cut emissions. And targeted policies to empower and support First Nations Communities to access and manage renewable energy farms, carbon offset projects and manage country.

“Despite the claims by the Government that it has been motivated by the interests of working people, there appeared to be no consultation with, nor coherent plan for workers and local communities. We need support for community-driven plans supported by a dedicated agency with quarantined funding for worker retraining and redeployment. The plans needs to support the transformation of regional communities to thrive, not a plan for vested interests designed behind closed doors.

“Public money should be spent to accelerate Australia’s transition away from fossil fuels to clean energy and jobs to ensure people, workers and communities share in the opportunities. This deal does not achieve that outcome.

“It also fails to cut emissions fast enough to protect people and places we love, let alone keep pace with similar nations who are cutting 2030 emission by 50%.”

“Strong emission cuts combined with a fair and inclusive plan will support workers and industries transition, strengthen regional communities, tackle poverty and inequality and rapidly reduce emissions.

Further Media Releases

Australian Conservation Foundation statement, 26 October 2021, Net zero by 2050 welcome, but 2030 is the main game

Climate Council, media statement, 26 October 2021, Half Baked: Net Zero announcement missing rapid emission cuts

WWF-Australia, 26 October 2021, WWF welcomes net zero commitment and calls for urgent action in this decade

Edmund Rice Centre, 26 October 2021, Media Release: Net zero emissions by 2050 too far away for the Pacific

Entry filed under: Coalition Climate Policies, news, Policy. Tags: , , , , , .

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