Greens launch full climate and energy plan “Powering Past Coal and Gas”

Australian Greens

A push for levy on coal exports to fund disaster recovery and new export industries

Greens Leader Adam Bandt has released the Greens full climate and energy plan – Powering Past Coal and Gas – vowing to push for a levy on coal exports as they are phased out, to support climate disaster recovery and fund an expansion of exports powered by clean energy, creating 805,000 new jobs over the decade.

Greens Leader Adam Bandt will be joined by Greens NSW Senate candidate David Shoebridge and Greens candidate for Richmond Mandy Nolan in Sydney’s North Shore at the historic “Coal Loader” to launch the plan.

Mr Bandt said coal and gas were the main causes of the climate crisis and the Greens would use their position in balance of power to stop new coal and gas mines and push for the coal export levy.

Powering Past Coal and Gas – The Greens’ climate and energy plan to fight the climate crisis, grow jobs and repower the economy with net-zero emissions by 2035 outlines sector-by-sector policies to drive down emissions, including in electricity, industry and transport, and transform how the economy uses energy.

The sector-by-sector plan goes beyond reducing domestic emissions to net-zero, also outlining an ambitious plan to phase out fossil fuel exports that have potential emissions more than double Australia’s domestic emissions. The Greens plan would see Australia get to net-zero by 2035 and then produce negative emissions that will draw down pollution by over 100 million tonnes a year by 2050.

Under this plan, thermal coal will be phased out by 2030, metallurgical coal by 2040, and a moratorium placed on new coal, oil and gas consistent with International Energy Agency requirements. It offers a detailed schedule for coal plant closures, and, in addition to supporting climate disaster recovery, the coal levy will fund the transition for workers and support new export industries.

Thermal coal exports will be phased out with a yearly export cap to decrease the maximum allowable annual thermal coal exports from 230 million tonnes in 2023 to zero by 2030.

Each tonne of coal exported would have an initial levy of $1 for thermal coal, and $3 for coking coal, and then increasing each year.

The $21.7 billion raised over this decade of phase out would go towards two key priorities:

  • Supporting disaster recovery and resilience programs as the damage of coal and gas-fueled extreme weather grows.
  • Investment in green hydrogen and green metals development to drive new export industries, and replace the use of coking coal in steel production.

Other elements of the Powering Past Coal and Gas plan include:

  • A target of net-zero by 2035 and negative emissions growing to 100 million tonnes by 2050. 100% renewables by 2030 and a goal of 700% renewables to power manufacturing industry, green hydrogen production and direct renewable exports.
  • The expansion of Commonwealth owned Snowy Hydro to become Clean Energy Australia, building 25 gigawatts of renewable energy and storage in the next eight years. Plans for the proposed Kurri Kurri gas plant will be scrapped.
  • A $25 Billion FutureGrid fund to enable the rewiring of Australia, upgrading and building new publicly owned transmission lines and interconnectors linking up renewable energy zones in line with the market operator’s Integrated System Plan. This measure is budget positive by $238 million over the decade.
  • A $15 billion ‘Made in Australia’ Bank and manufacturing fund to support the transformation of existing industries such as steel, aluminium and other minerals and metals processing and our manufacturing industries to participate in the global zero-carbon economy. Because these investments will make money, the fiscal impact only costs $5 billion over the decade.
  • Ending the $98 billion of handouts to corporations that encourage them to burn fossil fuels and redirecting that money into creating new jobs and industries.
  • Subsidies to households and businesses to electrify heating, cooking and to install batteries, generating a $44.5 billion investment into Australian homes and businesses.
  • A doubling of energy productivity by 2030 with a national energy efficiency scheme and an economy-wide price on carbon.
  • Supporting a $19 billion Job-for-Job guarantee for coal workers, maintaining their wages and employment for up to ten years, and subsidising older workers to retirement age.

The plan has been independently costed by the independent Parliamentary Budget Office and would improve the budget balance by $51.9 billion over the decade to be invested in other essential services like building 1 million public homes and putting mental and dental into Medicare.

As stated by Greens Leader Adam Bandt:

“Only the Greens are talking about the climate emergency this election.

“People want to hear parties tackling the big issues like climate change, but Liberal and Labor are desperate not to talk about it and they back more coal and gas instead.

“Liberal and Labor say they’ll open new coal and gas mines, but the Greens have a comprehensive climate and energy plan for Australia to power past coal and gas, become a renewable energy superpower and move to a jobs-rich zero pollution economy.”

“Liberal and Labor back 114 new coal and gas projects.

“The Greens have a plan to phase out coal exports and levy the coal corporations to help pay for the damage they’re causing and to grow new, clean industries with secure jobs.

“The coal levy will support climate disaster recovery and investment in expanding exports of renewable energy, green hydrogen, green steel and other green metals.”

“The Greens’ plan supports coal miners and communities by guaranteeing wages and growing new industries. In many parts of the country, the best job for a coal miner is another mining job and this plan will help make that happen.”

“80% of the coal that mining billionaires dig up is exported overseas, just like their profits, but the Greens’ plan will ensure they help fund the transition and provide secure jobs and industries for Australia.”

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