Election result could be milestone in climate battle
The Australian election result could be a big milestone in the battle against climate change.
“I don’t normally comment on political results nearly 10,000 miles away,” said Midlands green energy expert Ron Fox, “but the environment was a key concern for voters after three years of record-breaking bushfires and floods.”
The new leader, Anthony Albanese, who won the recent election with the opposition centre-left Labor Party, has promised a big shift on carbon emissions with more ambitious targets. He added that Australia could also become a renewable energy superpower.
Speaking after his victory, Mr Albanese, who will be heading Australia’s first Labor government in almost a decade after defeating Scott Morrison, the outgoing PM and leader of the Liberal-National coalition, said: “We have an opportunity now to end the climate wars in Australia.”
He added: “Australian businesses know that good action on climate change is good for jobs and good for our economy, and I want to join the global effort.”
“What is encouraging,” said Ron, of Noreus Ltd at Keele University, Staffordshire, “is that Australia wants to stop being one of the worst countries for carbon emissions.
“At the moment it is a massive supplier of fossil fuels and accounts for 3.6 per cent of the world’s emissions, but has only 0.3 per cent of the earth’s population.”
Yet it is also one of the countries most at risk from climate change, having suffered severe droughts, historic bushfires, successive years of record-breaking floods, and six cent mass bleaching events on the Great Barrier Reef.
The latest UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report warns that Australia is racing towards a future full of similar disasters unless action is taken now.
The country is still reliant on coal for most of its electricity, but the new leader has, so far, refused calls to phase out its use or to block the opening of new mines.
The country’s 2030 emissions reduction target of 26% on 2005 levels – half the US and UK benchmarks – was called “a great disappointment,” while the Labor Party promised a 43 per cent reduction and the Greens 75 per cent in the election.
The leader has also pledged to invest in solar banks, install 400 community batteries and boost the share of renewables in the national electricity market from 68 per cent now to 82 per cent by 2030, which would also reduce annual household energy bills.
He said his government would review the existing safeguarding mechanism, which is a deterrent to prevent 215 of Australia’s heaviest polluters from exceeding their limits of emitting more than 100,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide or equivalent greenhouse gasses.
They are encouraged to reduce their carbon emissions by issuing carbon credits to bring their net pollution down or to invest in carbon reduction projects to help the country achieve net zero by 2050.
“It all sounds very promising as long as these election promises are turned into action as soon as possible,” said Ron.
For more information on green energy, call Ron on 0845 4746641.
Caption: Australian election winner Anthony Albanese – but will it also be a victory for the environment? Picture: Wikipedia.