The Carbon Market Institute has welcomed news that the Australian National Party has agreed on net zero by 2050, however says the details behind the decision will matter and no formal and stronger 2030 target is a major disappointment.
“A net zero target by 2050 is important. Not just because it sets a clear target for infrastructure decisions being made now, but because it narrows the wriggle room. It could also mark the beginning of the end of Australia’s decades-long climate culture wars,” said CMI Chief Executive Officer, John Connor.
“CMI looks forward to the details of what will be included in the agreed package and hopes it heralds a departure from the false binary of ‘technology versus taxes’, with a shift to a technology and market investment approach.”
Australia can build on the positives of the Technology Roadmap with sectoral packages and a stronger Safeguard Mechanism. This will mean that our big emitters are sent clear signals for short and long term investment in decarbonisation. Sectoral packages and policies to be applied to energy, transport and agriculture will also be important to support emerging industries like carbon farming.
Mr Connor says the carbon farming industry could boost the millions being invested into regional Australia, diversifying farmer income streams and strengthening ecosystem health and climate resilience.
“Detail in this policy area is important to make sure both investment and environmental goals are achieved, which may or may not be the case with rumoured recommendations,” he said.
“The lack of a stronger 2030 target in the form of an updated nationally determined contribution (NDC) is not just a missed opportunity in accelerating clean economy investment opportunities, but a handicap on our negotiators in Glasgow at COP26.
“While stronger 2030 projections are welcome, the reality is that formally lodged NDCs are the hard currency in climate negotiations. We remain stuck with a target devised by Prime Minister Tony Abbott in mid-2015,” concluded Mr Connor.
CMI looks forward to further detail on the Coalition policy package.