Comparing Party policies on climate against Consistency with Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal in #Willsvotes and Victorian Senate

May 2, 2022 at 1:59 am Leave a comment

Kids protest outside Peter Khalil’s Wills electorate office on Sydney Road, urge Vote Climate

Climate Action Moreland has done an assessment of the published climate, environment and energy policies of the Political parties and candidates standing in the Wills electorate for 2022 and whether they are consistent with the science of climate change and the speed of transition required, and meeting the targets of the Paris Agreement.

We acknowledge climate policy is only one lens to view these Political Parties, but given it is a climate emergency we think it is a pretty important lens. About three quarters of Wills voters think climate action is a high priority. We also organised with Coburg Uniting Church and Neighbours United for Climate Action a Meet the candidates forum on 26 April, with a live recording. Climate risk is already affecting properties and insurance premiums around Australia, including in Moreland.

Our analysis on ranking the parties has been supported by the assessment of Climate Analytics, a leading international climate science and policy analysis NGO..

General Summary ranking of Party Policies against Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal for Wills

Consistency with Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal……….Party…………
Ambitous. Consistent with Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal. Specific range of policies. 75% 2030 target, 100% by 2035.
Greens will Phase out thermal coal export by 2030.
AJP commit to Global Methane pledge, developed climate, agriculture and animals policy highlighting necessity for methane emissions reduction.
The Greens
Animal Justice Party
Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies and targets tend to be general. AJP has a developed climate, agriculture and animals policy highlighting necessity for methane emissions reduction.Victorian Socialists,
Socialist Alliance
Some Ambition & some good well developed policies especially on Renewables, rewiring the grid, employment, EV adoption, but insufficient to meet PA goal. 43% 2030 target. Supports Gas expansion. Qualified support for new coal. Supports CCS. No commitment to sign Global methane Pledge.Australian Labor Party
Limited targets and policies, but highly insufficient to meet PA goal. 26-28% 2030 target. Supports gas and coal expansion, CCS.
Rejected signing Global Methane Pledge
Liberal Party
No Ambition, no action, likely to worsen climate crisisUnited Australia Party
Australian Federation Party
Denies and questions climate science. Step on the pedal for fossil fuelsPauline Hanson One Nation

Contents

Wills Electorate Party Climate Policy Assessment

Confirmed Wills candidates listed in ballot order from the AEC website.

WRIGHT, Thomas (Liberal) – Website | FB | Twitter
TINDAL, Jill (Pauline Hanson’s One Nation) Website | FB | Twitter
BLACK, Emma (Victoria Socialists) – Website | FB | Twitter
SERGI, Sam (Australian Federation Party) Website | FB | Twitter
BOLTON, Sue (Socialist Alliance) – Website | FB | Twitter
ZIVKOVIC, Irene (United Australia Party) Website | FB | Twitter
KHALIL, Peter (Australian Labor Party) – Website | FB | Twitter (@PeterKhalilMP)
HORSFALL, Leah (Animal Justice) – Website | FB | Twitter
JEFFORD, Sarah (Greens) – Website | FB | Twitter (@SarahJefford)

Five of the nine candidates attended a Wills climate forum on 26 April at the Coburg Uniting Church Hall. Full video recording of candidate statements and questions available.

Australian Labor Party

Candidate: Peter Khalil MP. Main Climate Policy: Powering Australia.

Powering Australia is a detailed policy on boosting renewables and growing job opportunities. Like the Paris Agreement, this policy does not mention fossil fuels at all.

The ALP National Policy Platform (2021) contains detailed policy, including in favour of expansion of gas.

The Policy advocates increasing 2030 target emissions reduction target to 43%, a definite improvement but still putting us near the bottom of the pack in the international field. In the previous election in 2019 the ALP took a 45% target to the polls. The Business Council of Australia is advocating for 46-50% target by 2030.

Related policies include:

See also ALP Policies and 2021 ALP National Platform (PDF) for a full list of policy actions. While these policies all contain much needed ambition, they fail to address fossil fuel expansion, fossil fuel subsidies, and reducing methane from mining, agriculture and waste landfills.

Anthony Albanese would not commit a Labor government to signing the Global Methane pledge in November 2021 : “Here in Australia, we have a very different system of agriculture… it is different from the way that agriculture and farming practices happen in other parts of the world. We need to drive down emissions as much as possible. But it would have been premature for Australia to sign up to that commitment,” he said.

Anthony Albanese has committed a federal Labor government to supporting new coal mines, ‘as long as they stack up environmentally and commercially’. Current EPBC legislation contains no climate triggers to assess new mines on environment grounds. (April 18 SMH – Labor digs in on support for coal to negate damaging climate debate)

The emissions reduction targets are still much less than what we need to do, so not consistent for meeting the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target. Even the Business Council of Australia has advocated for a 46-50% emissions reduction by 2030 target, more than the ALP.

There is a lot positive in the Labor policies for climate action, but its main failings is it only addresses half the equation: growing renewables and the transition required with that. Stopping new fossil fuel projects, let alone phase out of existing fossil fuels is entirely absent. Indeed Labor policy commit the party to gas expansion (see National Policy Platform, Chapter 3, Paragraph 34) So Labor is trying to be a small target and also trying to send different messages to two quite different constituencies.

Reference:

The Greens

Candidate: Sarah Jefford. Main climate Policy: Climate Change and Energy

Nuanced detail with 46 policy aims. Greens climate policy platform is consistent with what the science demands we need to do to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target: 75% emissions reduction by 2030, net zero by 2035.

  • Thermal coal exports to be phased out by 2030 and all other fossil fuel exports to cease by 2040. Removal of all subsidies to the fossil fuel industry.
  • A just transition to a net negative greenhouse gas economy.
  • Implementation of Fuel efficiency and emissions standards while transitioning to sustainable transport, investing in public transport and high speed rail.
  • Land restoration and carbon drawdown.
  • Improved regulations, monitoring and compliance for all existing gas operations, particularly in relation to methane emissions.
  • A national system of energy efficiency targets and stringent Minimum Energy Performance Standards for products, buildings and infrastructure.
  • Creation of a renewable energy export industry, including renewables-generated fuels such as Green Hydrogen, direct connections to neighbouring countries and the export of technology, and more.

Sarah Jefford said the Greens would likely support Global Methane Pledge.

Victorian Socialists

Candidate: Emma Black. See Policy Platform

Rapid development of renewables in next decade. Stop all new coal and gas. A general policy platform that may be consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target..

REAL CLIMATE ACTION
A planned shift from coal and gas to 100% renewable energy within 10 years via public investment and emission reduction targets; guarantee alternative secure jobs for workers from the fossil fuel industry in the renewable energy sector; bring the power industries under public ownership and democratic control; stop Adani and all new coal mines; stop fracking and all unconventional gas extraction; tax the corporate polluters and billionaires; justice for climate refugees and those displaced by climate change; Tackle emissions from transport by investing in public transport and Very Fast Trains to connect capital cities.

WATER AND ENVIRONMENT
Ban the logging of old-growth forests and begin an urgent program of reforestation, sustainable farming and biodiversity protection; enforce the rehabilitation of mine sites by companies. Stop uranium mining and oppose the nuclear industry. Restore & increase funding to scientific organisations like the CSIRO & BOM that research climate change & green technology. Fund recycling and green tech facilities to tackle the recycling crisis; penalise companies that use excessive packaging or create products that can’t be repaired. End the profiteering of water trading – decisions on water allocation to be based on sustaining communities and the environment.

Socialist Alliance

Candidate: Sue Bolton. See Policy Platform

A general policy platform that may be consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target.

A planned shift to 100% renewable energy within 5-10 years via public investment and emission reduction targets. Bring the power industries under public ownership and democratic control. Phase out fossil fuels: no new coal or gas projects, including Adani; ban fracking and unconventional gas mining. Guaranteed jobs with no loss in pay for workers in fossil fuel industries. End all fossil fuels subsidies. Asylum for climate refugees and those displaced by climate change. Ban the logging of old-growth forests. Begin an urgent program of reforestation, sustainable farming and biodiversity protection. Employ Indigenous rangers to lead the urgent program of reforestation, cultural burning, biodiversity protection and sustainable farming projects. Enforce the rehabilitation of mine sites by companies. Institute a national heat health strategy. No nuclear energy, no nuclear weapons and no uranium mining.

Sue Bolton highlighted the need for independant monitoring and measurement of methane emissions. Would support a Global Methane Pledge.

Animal Justice Party

Candidate: Leah Horsfall. Several important initiatives under Planet Policy.

No emissions reduction targets Net zero by 2035 target set with calls for rapid energy transition to achieve this. Consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target. For climate action key

Key Objectives include.:

1. To prohibit any fossil fuel expansion and rapidly transform to a carbon-free energy infrastructure.
2. To rapidly transform Australian agriculture to allow reforestation by reducing grazing.
3. Implement a carbon tax on both the fossil fuel and animal agriculture industries.
4. Direct carbon tax income into clean energy solutions, sustainable plant-based food agriculture systems and education.
5. Protect existing forests and marine habitats from further destruction.

The two page information sheet 20 on climate change highlights the need to reduce agricultural methane emissions (from cattle and sheep) through moving to sustainable agricultural models, reforestation and reducing the ruminant herds, as well as through demand driven campaigns of more people moving to a largely plant based diet, all solutions which the recent IPCC AR6 WGIII report highlights. AJP would likely support Global Methane Pledge. Other Planet Policies include in Energy, Environmental Law, Great Barrier Reef, Land Clearing, Natural Gas, and Waste.

Update 12 May. A more detailed election policy platform document (PDF) which the Candidate drew our attention to, outlines the Animal Justice Party will Stand up against all causes of climate change, including: Declare a national climate emergency; Net zero by 2035; Phase out fossil fuels and animal agriculture; Support the plant-based economy; Remove subsidies on harmful industries.

The Animal Justice Party will push for the natural environment’s rights to be recognised in law. They support a A National Ban on Fracking, No oil Drilling, addressing issues with management of Murray Darling System environment and water; recognise all the essential environmental and habitat services provides by forests including carbon storage and place a ban on logging in all of our public native forests.

The party has a commitment to: “sign Australia up to the 30% methane emissions reduction by 2030
target, as over 100 other countries have done, and commit to net-zero emissions by 2035. We must
urgently develop and enact an effective climate action plan.”

The detail is different to the Greens, while not quite as detailed in some areas and more so in others. We have decided to move their ranking to the equivalent level of the Greens.

Reference:

Liberal Party of Australia

Candidate: Thomas Wright. Main Climate Policy is part of PROTECTING OUR ENVIRONMENT

Climate targets remain at 26-28% by 2030 which is far from sufficient according to the science. Reliant on Technology Investment Roadmap which fails to set targets to match the science. Has set a net zero by 2050 target, but the plan has major gaps with no additional funding or climate policies to achieve this target.

Supports opening up new coal, gas (Beetaloo and Barossa projects in NT, Narrabri gas in NSW) and oil projects despite International Energy Agency advice and what the science says in terms of stopping all new fossil fuel projects. Under the Coalition government, Australia is considering more than 100 fossil fuel projects that could produce 5% of global industrial emissions. (The Guardian Nov, 2021)

Supports ‘Clean hydrogen’ which is mostly a subsidy for gas to produce ‘blue hydrogen’ rather than renewables based ‘green hydrogen’. In three weeks of the election campaign has promised over $300 million to Carbon Capture and Storage. Of the 8 hydrogen energy hubs it is subsidising, only one will source hydrogen solely from renewables. The other seven are co-located near fossil gas infrastructure to use gas to generate hydrogen, with renewables hydrogen also feeding in some instances. In the first week of the campaign, had promised fossil fuel subsidies of $1.3 billion.

Committed to $20 billion of investment over 10 years, plus the $2 billion Climate Solutions Fund to support projects like capturing methane from landfill and storing carbon in forests and soils, while refusing to sign on to the Global Methane pledge to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030. Not addressing need for more accurate independant measurement of fossil methane emissions. The International Energy Agency (IEA) assesses Australia’s fugitive emissions are double what is being reported and satellite measurements appear to confirm this vast difference. For example, Glencore’s methane problem. Also reference study of methane emissions in the Surat Basin in Queensland (Luhar et al 2020) published in December 2020, with substantial cattle grazing and Coal Seam Gas production found that methane emissions had been underestimated. 

Has not renewed Renewable Energy Target.

Is developing Snowy 2.0, and some grid transmission upgrades.

Has consistently lobbied against World Heritage determination to place the Great Barrier Reef as in danger. Has failed to implement recommendations of EPBC Act review on biodiversity.

For bushfire recovery has allocated $200 million to help native wildlife and their habitats recover from the devastating impacts of the 2019-20 bushfires, while many bushfire human victims are still waiting for assistance in recovery and rebuilding their lives. Has failed to undertake a national climate risk assessment and national climate adaptation plan, leaving recovery and resilience after extreme weather disasters as piecemeal funding of recovery and adaptation.

Has invested $2.8 billion to enhance Australia’s Antarctic operations and science capabilities, although this may be to shore up Australian geopolitical claims on Antarctica, rather than for purely environmental or science reasons.

Energy policy is based upon the slogan of Lower Power Prices. Falsely takes much of the credit for lower power prices arising from state based renewables programs. Has tried to hinder early closure of coal power, subsidised new gas plant (Kurri Kurri), delayed Commonwealth legislation for offshore wind industry. On Friday 29 April data showed wholesale electricity prices have more than doubled in the last year, with Queensland and NSW where they are more reliant on coal suffering the highest price rises. Tasmania, South Australia and Victoria where there are higher renewables resulted in lower price rises. Unreliable coal power breakdowns are a key cause of high electricity prices.

Liberal Party Policy documents don’t mention the Government’s Future fuels strategy announced in November 2021 which will invest in building charging facilities, but not include subsidies or tax incentives to make the vehicles cheaper, or address vehicle fuel or emission standards to drive transport emissions lower and stop Australia being a dumping ground for fuel inefficient and polluting vehicle models by manufacturers.

Coalition government has failed to adopt Samuel Review of EPBC Act to improve climate, conservation and biodiversity outcomes.

Further Reference:

United Australia Party

Candidate: Michael El-Hajja was originally the candidate but did not nominate. Instead Irene Zivkovic nominated at the last minute. See National Platform

Has no specific climate or environment policy. Energy policy is to establish a local nuclear power industry. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. Clive Palmer, formerly in the Liberal Party and a billionaire bankroller of the UAP, wants to develop the Waratah coal mine in the Galilee basin. There is aleady an indigenous case challenging approval for the Waratah coal mine. UAP Policies may, through in-action, escalate global warming and worsen the climate crisis.

Australian Federation Party

Candidate: Sam Sergi. Party is Conservative, anti-public health, no formal climate, energy, environment policies.

Couldn’t locate any climate, energy or environment policies on party website. The party constitution says legislation will be considered based on principles of: Limited Government, personal responsibility, free enterprise, and civil society. The words sound good, but are deceptive. I suggest they are moderate conservative laissez faire federalists, and probably place them to the right of the Liberal Party. The Party was established as the Country Alliance in 2004, and has morphed through a number of name changes according to its history on Wikipedia. In its present form it appears to bring anti-vaccine and anti-public health mandate individuals together as a result of the government lockdowns and public health pandemic response, including describing the public health measures imposed likened to a ‘marxist dictatorship’. See Federation Party blog post by KEITH ROBARDS, October 25, 2021, Our position on the disproportionate public health response from the Government – and our plan to reopen Australia.

Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party

Candidate: Jill Tindal. The Party Proudly denies the climate science as reported by the IPCC and Academies of Science.

Interesting to see One Nation in Wills. In the Affordable Energy and Cost of Living Policy they support building new coal fired power, investigating nuclear power, and stopping the subsidies to solar and wind. Not a word about ending the Fossil Fuel subsidies presently running at $11.6 billion per year in 2021/22. In the One Nation climate policy they state “We are the only political party to question climate science.”

Parties standing for Victorian Senate

General Summary ranking of Party Policies against Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal for Senate

Note: Parties are listed in alphabetical order within each ranking.

Consistency with Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal………………..Party………………..
Ambitous. Consistent with Paris Agreement 1.5C Goal. Specific range of policies. 75% 2030 target, 100% by 2035.
Greens will Phase out thermal coal export by 2030.
AJP commit to Global Methane pledge, developed climate, agriculture and animals policy highlighting necessity for methane emissions reduction.
The Greens
Animal Justice Party,
Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies and targets tend to be general.
Australian Democrats,
Australian Progressives,
FUSION: Science, Pirate, Secular, Climate Emergency
Reason Australia,
Socialist Alliance,
Sustainable Australia Party,
Victorian Socialists,
Group T BENEDYKA Susan
ALP has Some Ambition & some good well developed policies especially on Renewables, rewiring the grid, employment, EV adoption, but insufficient to meet PA goal. 43% 2030 target. Supports Gas expansion. Qualified support for new coal. Supports CCS. No commitment to sign Global methane Pledge.
Benedyka supports Steggall/Haines Climate Change Act
Australian Labor Party

Limited targets and policies, but highly insufficient to meet PA goal
26-28% 2030 target. Supports gas and coal expansion, CCS.
Rejected signing Global Methane Pledge.
Liberal Party
No Ambition, no action, likely to worsen climate crisisAustralian Federation Party,
Australian Values Party,
Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party,
Group B RICHARDSON Damien,
Group Y BYRNE Peter (SEP),
Informed Medical Options Party,
Legalise Cannabis Australia,
Liberal Democrats,
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party,
United Australia Party
Denies and questions climate science. Step on the pedal for fossil fuelsCitizens Party,
Group R JONAS Morgan C,
Pauline Hanson One Nation
The Great Australian Party

There are 26 groups and an ungrouped column for the Victorian Senate election. On the white Senate ballot paper, the AEC says you need to either:

  • number at least six boxes above the line for the parties or groups of your choice, or
  • number at least 12 boxes below the line for individual candidates of your choice.

Your preferences count and the more boxes you number, the greater exercise of your voting preferences. This is particularly important for the last one or two Senate spots.

Group A – Reason Australia
VEGA Yolanda Reason Australia
MILLWARD Harry Reason Australia

Note: Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general. Net zero by 2030 target. They have the vibe right: “Let’s just be blunt: If we don’t do something about the devastating effects of climate change – then we’re all f*cked.” See Climate Policy

Group B (Group B)
RICHARDSON Damien –
McBRIDE John

Note: Neighbours actor Damien Richardson is standing on the ‘Freedom platform’ against public health orders and vaccination mandates. No climate or environment policies. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets.

Group C – Australian Democrats
GREEN Leonie Australian Democrats
JAGOE Stephen Peter Australian Democrats

Note: Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general. 66% reduction by 2030. See A Decade of Climate Action

Group D – Liberal/The Nationals
HENDERSON Sarah Liberal
McKENZIE Bridget The Nationals
MIRABELLA Greg Liberal
KMETJ Chrestyna Liberal
HARRINGTON Mick The Nationals
BURGESS David Liberal

Note: Lacks ambition. Approving new coal and gas. 26-28% emissions reduction by 2030. see assessment for Wills.

Group E – Legalise Cannabis Australia
SMITH Elissa Legalise Cannabis Australia
TAYLOR Wayne Legalise Cannabis Australia

Note: single issue party, does emphasis positive environmental and climate consequences of the hemp industry including carbon sequestration and opportunity to move to bioplastics to reduce microplastics problem. No specific climate or environment policies or targets. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. See Party Policy

Group F – Sustainable Australia Party – Stop Overdevelopment / Corruption
WEARNE Madeleine Sustainable Australia Party – Stop Overdevelopment / Corruption
LONG Robert Sustainable Australia Party – Stop Overdevelopment / Corruption

Note: Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general. A preferred target of net zero emissions by 2035. Reduce emissions by at least 50 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030. See Environment Policy

Group G – Australian Values Party
BURSON Chris Australian Values Party
ASSER Samantha Australian Values Party

Notes: Appears to support nuclear industry development for energy. A specific focus will be “to off-set emissions”, ignoring the huge problem with corruption and fraud in carbon offsets. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. See Energy and Climate Policies.

Group H – Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party
HINCH Derryn Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party
STANFIELD Ruth Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party

Note: Policies around justice issues. No policies on climate or environment. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. See Policies

Group I – Animal Justice Party
CURRIE Bronwyn Animal Justice Party
DELFORCE Chris Animal Justice Party

Note: Ambituous. Main focus is animal welfare, but their planet policy is progressive and ambitous, especially around agriculture and methane emissions. See Wills Assessment.

Group J – Australian Progressives
PITT Antoinette Australian Progressives
KNIGHT David Australian Progressives

Note: Ambituous. May be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general. Net zero for carbon emissions reduction by 2030. See Environment Policy

Group – K Australian Labor Party
WHITE Linda Australian Labor Party
STEWART Jana Australian Labor Party
NUNN Casey Australian Labor Party
BRIDGER-DARLING Megan Australian Labor Party
McFARLANE Josh Australian Labor Party

Note: Some ambition. 43% emissions reduction by 2030. See Wills assessment.

Group L – United Australia Party
BABET Ralph United Australia Party
MORAN Kelly United Australia Party
GRIMMOND Kenneth United Australia Party

Note: UAP Policies may, through in-action, escalate global warming and worsen the climate crisis. See Wills Assessment.

Group M – Socialist Alliance
DANCE Felix Socialist Alliance
CARR Angela Socialist Alliance

Note: A general policy platform that may be consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target. See Wills Assessment.

Group N – Australian Federation Party
HUGHES Vern Australian Federation Party
KIM Karen Australian Federation Party
LACEY Cheryl Australian Federation Party
MARA Chris Australian Federation Party
SEWAK Neerja Australian Federation Party
O’CONNELL Mark Australian Federation Party

Note: No specific climate, energy or environment policies. No Ambition, no action, likely to worsen climate crisis. See Wills Assessment.

Group O – Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party
CONSTANTINOU Ethan Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party
BOURMAN Nicole Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party

Note: No formal climate policy. “we do not have a specific policy on this. We will support an evidence-based Policy from a State of Federal Government of the day.” Supports nuclear energy development. Highlights subsidies for renewables but ignores $11.6 billion pa subsidy for Fossil Fuels. No Ambition, no action, likely to worsen climate crisis. See Mining and Energy Policy (PDF), Climate Policy (PDF).

Group P – Pauline Hanson’s One Nation
PICKERING Warren Pauline Hanson’s One Nation
HUXHAM Stuart Pauline Hanson’s One Nation

Note: Denies and questions climate science. Step on the pedal for fossil fuels. See Wills Assessment

Group Q – Citizens Party
BARWICK Robbie Citizens Party
ISHERWOOD Craig Citizens Party

Note: Promotes climate denial. “CO2 is not a pollutant. While most alarmist scientists are not frauds, their climate research is not objective, but biased by the dominant green philosophy.” “will withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol, the COP21 “Paris Agreement”, and any further international climate-change conventions.” While advocates nationalising gas and oil extraction, its all increasing fossil fuels. Denies and questions climate science. Step on the pedal for fossil fuels. See Climate Change Policy, and Energy Resources Policy

Group R (Group R)
JONAS Morgan C –
SMIT Monica –

Note: Primary focus is against public health orders and vaccination mandates. But also argues for withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, “End the decommissioning of coal-fired power stations”, and “Create a plan for nuclear and thorium energy”, increase oil exploration, abolish fuel excise. Environment policy is ‘coming soon…’ Oh dear. Appears to support further development of energy resources (Coal, oil and gas). Step on the pedal for fossil fuels. See Positions.

Group S – FUSION: Science, Pirate, Secular, Climate Emergency
CORDNER HUNT Kammy FUSION: Science, Pirate, Secular, Climate Emergency
FARRANT Tahlia FUSION: Science, Pirate, Secular, Climate Emergency

Note: Ambitous. A general policy platform that may be consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target. Includes: Declare and mobilise against climate emergency, 10 year transition to negative emissions, Price on carbon, Lead internationally to restore a safe climate, 800% renewables. See Climate Emergency Policy

Group T (Group T)
BENEDYKA Susan –
RICHARDS Christine –

Note: Ambitious. Supports and advocates for the Climate Change Act proposed by independents Zali Steggall and Dr Helen Haines. Strongly supports renewables. Climate Policies are general, and in line with the Teal Independents which means they may be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general. . See Policies.

Group U – The Greens
THORPE Lidia The Greens
FROGLEY Adam The Greens
AUSTIN Sissy The Greens
PAYNE Zeb The Greens

Note: Ambitous. Nuanced detail with 46 policy aims. Greens climate policy platform is consistent with what the science demands we need to do to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target: 75% emissions reduction by 2030, net zero by 2035. See Wills Assessment.

Group V – The Great Australian Party
O’BRYAN Darryl The Great Australian Party
WHITEHEAD Geoff The Great Australian Party

Note: No climate targets. Opposes Kyoto agreement and Paris agreement. Against carbon taxes. Against fracking. Supports Resource rental taxes on mining. Opposes privatisation of electricity (but doesn’t mention nationalisation). Appears to support further development of energy resources (Coal, oil and gas). Step on the pedal for fossil fuels. See Energy Policy.

Group W – Liberal Democrats
LIMBRICK David Liberal Democrats
MITCHELL Krystle Liberal Democrats
WHITE Caroline Liberal Democrats

Note: Verging on denial. “No net-zero emissions target. This target is an absurd extension of climate alarmist ideology”. Advocates for ‘free market energy’ and lifting subsidies for renewables, but ignores $11.6 billion pa subsidies for fossil fuels. Advocates for Nuclear energy development, ignoring the great amount of subsidisation this would entail. See Cheap and Reliable Energy Policy.

Group X – Informed Medical Options Party
CLONARIDIS Nick Informed Medical Options Party
CURNOW Robyn Informed Medical Options Party

Note: Main focus is on removing no jab no play public health orders and against vaccination mandates, support for natural therapies, against flouridation of public water supply. Calls for “Investigate safe, economical and environmentally-sound energy production in Australia.” No specific climate policies or targets. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. See Policies.

Group Y (Group Y)
BYRNE Peter –
WARDLE Jason –

Note: This is the Socialist Equality Party. “None of the other parties, including the Greens, has a solution. Their policies are limited to what is possible within the framework of the profit system and the national state, and are therefore piecemeal, parochial and based on the market. But capitalism and its division of the world into rival nation states are the essential barrier to the only real solution: a scientifically-based and internationally coordinated plan to halt and reverse climate change.” No specific climate policies or targets. Not consistent with what the science says we need to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets. See Election Statement

Group Z – Victorian Socialists
MYLVAGANAM Aran Victorian Socialists
RICCARDI Laura Victorian Socialists

Note: Ambitous. Rapid development of renewables in next decade. Stop all new coal and gas. A general policy platform that may be consistent with what the science says is necessary to meet the 1.5C Paris Agreement climate target. See Wills Assessment.

Ungrouped
FLOYD Glenn Independent
RIDGEWAY Allen Independent
BOND James Independent
SMITH Neal Independent
DICKS Max Independent
ATKINSON Bernardine Independent
ROSS Paul Independent
DE FRANCESCO Nat Independent
TOSCANO Joseph Independent
TRAN Tara Independent
DILLON David John Independent
GONSALVEZ Geraldine Marie Antoinette Independent

Other climate focussed assessments of Party climate policies

There are other assessments of Party climate policies.

Vote Climate and VCAN have again produced a Senate how to vote scorecard based on climate, not only for Victoria, but for each state of Australia. This assessment is similar to the above ranking which we made. Read more at Vote Climate Website, including some songle electorate scorecards.

The Vote Climate One website has done a thorough national assessment of candidates and rated them using a traffic light guide, including for Wills and the Vic Sentate. The resulting ranking is similar to Climate Action Moreland’s assessment (above).

Thea Ormerod of the Australian Regious Response to Climate Change has also done an assessment of the 3 major parties: Labor, Liberals, the Greens, and the sitting Independent MPs. See: Confused by Different Parties’ Climate Policies? This Will Help. An honest look at climate policies for Election 2022.

Update. Climate Analytics Assessment

Climate Analytics have put out an assessment of ther major Parties and the Teal Independents on climate policies and targets which is consistent with our assessment. Read Australian Election 2022
Political party and independent climate goals: analysis (PDF)

In a media briefing Climate Analytics say “The results are stark, showing the LNP targets are consistent with 3 ̊C of global warming (bordering on 4 ̊C), the ALP’s target is consistent with 2 ̊C, and the Teal Independents and Greens consistent with 1.5 ̊C of warming.”

“Already, Australians are feeling the heat of a world that has warmed by just over one degree, and it’s not pretty. That the LNP appears committed to risk global warming of 3°C or more is beyond irresponsible,” said Climate Analytics CEO Bill Hare.

For the Liberal National Party Coalition they say:

The LNP climate commitment of a 26-28% emissions reduction by 2030 is consistent with a warming of 3˚C globally, bordering on 4˚C. Under this level of warming, the Great Barrier Reef and all other tropical reefs would be destroyed. At the global level the most extreme heat events could be 5-6 times more frequent than in recent decades and in Australia the highest maximum temperatures about 3˚C hotter. In other words, an intense heat event that might have occurred once in a decade in recent decades could occur almost every year, and be substantially hotter.

For the Labor Party they say:

The ALP’s 2030 target of a 43% emissions reduction is consistent with 2˚C of warming globally. Under this level of warming, if sustained, the Great Barrier Reef would very likely be destroyed, along with all other tropical reefs in Australia and elsewhere. At the global level the most extreme heat events could be about three times more frequent than in recent decades, and in Australia the highest maximum temperatures about 1.7 ˚C hotter. In other words, an intense heat event that might have might have occurred once in a decade in recent decades could occur about every three years and would be significantly hotter.

For the Teal Independents they say;

The Teal Independents have rallied around the Zali Steggall Climate Bill, which contains a target of a 60% emissions reduction by 2030. This is close to, but within, the upper boundary of modelled 1.5˚C pathways for Australia. A stronger target would give a higher probability of meeting the 1.5˚C limit, but it is still within a 1.5˚C pathway. Under this warming some areas of the Great Barrier Reef and other Australian tropical reefs, including Ningaloo, would survive. At the global level the most extreme heat events could be nearly twice as frequent than in recent decades and in Australia the highest max temperatures about 1.1˚C hotter.

For the Australians Greens they say:

The Greens’ target of a 74% emissions reduction by 2030 is consistent with limiting warming to 1.5 degrees. Under this level of warming some regions of the Great Barrier Reef and other tropical reefs around Australia, including Ningaloo, would survive. At the global level the most extreme heat events could be nearly twice as frequent than in recent decades and in Australia the highest maximum temperatures about 1.1˚C hotter. In other words, an intense heat event that might have might have occurred once in a decade in recent decades could occur every five years and would be noticeably hotter.

What Australia needs to do to meet Paris Agreement climate targets

What Australia does on climate change will make a world of difference. We are among the top 20 biggest polluters in the world, and if you count our exports we’re the fifth largest.

Note the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th assessment report Working Group II report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability. The last chapter in the summary for Policymakers highlights the urgency needed for climate action:

SPM.D.5.3 The cumulative scientific evidence is unequivocal: Climate change is a threat to human well-being and planetary health. Any further delay in concerted anticipatory global action on adaptation and mitigation will miss a brief and rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a liveable and sustainable future for all. (very high confidence)

IPCC Climate report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability Summary for Policymakers (PDF)

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres speech on launching the IPCC report was scathing, calling the abdication of government leadership as criminal and accusing the world’s biggest polluters of being guilty of arson of our only home. (see Full Speech at Climate Citizen Blog)

IPCC climate report slide (2022)

We used the following two 2021 Climate Council documents to assess party/candidate policies against.

Climate Council, 30 August 2021, Emission Reduction Targets: What you need to know (PDF). This explains the importance of carbon budgets, our present climate targets and what climate targets we need for 2030 to meet our Paris Agreement commitments. Key Criteria considered includes:

  • Align with the science (for example, by basing it on an appropriate carbon budget);
  • Deliver steep reductions early, with interim targets that guide the emissions curve down, fast;
  • Aim for “real zero” and not just “net zero”;
  • Apply economy-wide without any sector or industry exclusions;
  • Include all gases and aerosols;
  • Consider equity (I.e. What resources are at our disposal? What is our “fair share”?);
  • Aim high by doing the most possible, not the bare minimum.

Climate Council, Aim High, Go Fast: Why Emissions Need to Plummet this Decade, (2021):

Our response must match the scale and urgency of this worsening situation. Action to deeply reduce emissions this decade will determine whether the climate system can or cannot be stabilised at warming of well below 2°C.
While action is increasing in Australia and world-wide, it remains too slow and not enough. Protecting Australians from the worsening effects of climate change requires all governments, businesses, industries and communities to strongly step up their activities to deeply reduce emissions during the 2020s.
The lion’s share of the effort to get to net zero emissions needs to happen this decade. Delaying further than we have already would mean that even more rapid and disruptive action to reduce emissions is required later.
Governments, business and industry are committing increasingly to net zero targets. However, timeframes for these commitments are generally too long. The world achieving net zero by 2050 is at least a decade too late and carries a strong risk of irreversible global climate disruption at levels inconsistent with maintaining well-functioning human societies.
Australian governments, businesses, industries and communities can and must cut emissions deeply. Given the scale of the global emissions reduction task, and taking into account Australia’s very high level of emissions and our huge renewable energy resources, Australia should aim to reduce emissions by 75% below 2005 levels by 2030 and reach net zero emissions by 2035. This is a fair and achievable contribution to the global task and an imperative given our high vulnerability to escalating extreme weather.

Aim High, Go Fast: Why Emissions Need to Plummet this Decade, (2021)

The Paris Agreement details both 2C and well below 2C as targets, with 1.5C often spoken of as the lower target. That extra half a degree Celsius of warming entails significant extra impacts on biodiversity and extreme whether frequency and intensity with implications for biodiversity and human adaptation.

The red line below shows 75 percent emissions reduction by 2030 in Australia’s carbon budget as the science based target we should be aiming for.

Climate Council: 75% emissions reduction needed for 2030 target to meet Paris Agreement 1.5C

Methane Emissions

The IPCC climate reports have consistently emphasised the need to reduce methane emissions as an important short term effective climate action. Methane emissions come from animals in agriculture (primarily cattle and sheep) and some agricultural practices (eg certain wet rice farming), fugitive emissions from mining, and waste landfill sites. Each of these emissions sources needs its own sectorial plan to reduce emissions.

In September 2021 the USA and UK formulated a Global Methane Pledge to reduce methane emissions by 30 percent on 2020 levels by 2030. At the end of COP26 103 countries had signed the pledge, and now at 112 countries (as at 1 May 2022). But not Australia. More Information at Global Methane Pledge official website.

Please watch the answers to the methane question at the Wills climate Forum on Youtube.

What does the science say on methane emissions? Methane is responsible for about one third of present global warming. Reducing methane emissions could reduce global warming by 0.5C by 2100. It is highly efffective to reduce methane emissions as it is a powerful short-term greenhouse gas. Over a 20 year period (GWP20) it is 84 times stronger than Carbon Dioxide.

IPCC AR6 WGIII report Summary for Policymakers highlights that 50-80% of fugitive methane emissions could be avoided through available technologies:

C.4.5 Global methane emissions from energy supply, primarily fugitive emissions from production and transport of fossil fuels, accounted for about 18% [13%-23%] of global GHG emissions from energy supply, 32% [22%-42%] of global methane emissions, and 6% [4%-8%] of global GHG emissions in 2019 (high confidence). About 50–80% of CH 4 emissions from these fossil fuels could be avoided with currently available technologies at less than USD50 tCO 2 -eq -1 (medium confidence).

IPCC AR6 WGIII report Summary for Policymakers

There are solutions to fugitive emissions. See chapter 6 of IPCC AR6 WGIII Full report:

Box 6.5 Methane mitigation options for coal, oil, and gas

Methane emissions mainly from coal, oil, and gas currently represent in 2019 about 18% of energy supply sector GHG emissions and 90% of global energy supply non-CO 2 emissions in 2019 (Minx et al. 2021b). While approximately 80% of the life-cycle methane emissions in the coal sector occur during underground mining, oil and gas emissions are spread throughout upstream, midstream, and downstream stages (IPCC, 2019) (Alvarez et al. 2018). For this reason, methane reductions from coal mining can be accomplished through coal mine methane recovery (where methane and coal are recovered simultaneously) and from the ventilation air, which can reduce methane emissions by 50–75% (Singh and Hajra 2018; Zhou et al. 2016). Governments incentivize such operations through a number of emissions trading and offset programs (Haya et al. 2020). Methane emissions in the oil and gas sector can be reduced by leak detection and repair, relevant across varying time scales (hours to decades) and regional scopes (component/facility level to continental) (Fox et al. 2019). Around 50% of the methane emitted from oil and gas infrastructure can be mitigated at net-negative costs; that is, the market price of the recovered methane is higher than the mitigation costs (IEA 2021e). As CO 2 emissions are reduced and fossil fuel consumption decreases, methane emissions associated with these supply chains are anticipated to decline (section 6.7). That said, substantial ‘legacy’ methane emissions – methane leaks after abandonment – will remain even if a complete fossil fuel phase-out takes place.

These legacy emissions are estimated to be less than 1–4% of overall methane emissions across all fossil fuel sources (Kholod et al. 2020; Williams et al. 2021b). Even without a complete phase-out, 50-80% of methane emissions from coal, oil and gas could be avoided with currently available technologies at less than USD 50 tCO 2 -eq -1 (Höglund-Isaksson et al. 2020; Harmsen et al. 2019). Methane recovery from abandoned coal mines could offset most project costs (Singh and Sahu 2018). For abandoned oil and gas wells, low plugging costs could be offset through methane recovery, while high plugging costs would likely require some market or policy support (Kang et al. 2019).

See Chapter 6 of IPCC AR6 WGIII Full report on Climate Solutions

Here is the problem: Fugitive methane emissions is greatly underestimated from coal and gas projects in Australia. The IEA estimates Australian methane emissions as double what Australia is officially reporting. Take for example Glencore’s metallurgical coal mines in the Bowen Basin in Queensland as reported by Australian Centre for Corporate Responsibility. Satellite data shows that fugitive emissions from Glencore’s metallurgical coal mines in the Bowen Basin are being vastly underestimated. Refer Dan Gocher, 20th April 2022 : Glencore’s Methane Problem. Analysis of Glencore’s underreporting of methane emissions.

Article Updates 12 May: Leah Horsfall directed our attention to the Animal Justice Party 2022 full policy platform document. This had climate policy detail that wasn’t contained on the AJP website. We have reassessed the ranking of Animal Justice Party both for the seat of Wills and Victorian Senate to place them at the same level with The Greens. Both these parties have ambitious and detailed policy platforms with slightly different focuses.
It was decided to also move Susan Benedyka (independant standing for the Vic Senate) to the level above the ALP. She is standing on a similar climate policy platform as the Teal Independents and deserves ranking with all the other parties that are ambitious and may be consistent with PA goal but policies tend to be general.

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Climate the hot issue in Wills and across Australia Climate Risk mapping for Moreland: climate impacts and insurability

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