Labor’s climate policy a solid start, but still falls short: Oxfam

Responding to the release of Labor’s Climate Change Action Plan, Oxfam Australia Climate Change Adviser Dr Simon Bradshaw said:

“While today’s announcement includes some very welcome steps, overall Labor’s plan still falls short of the leadership and courage that the climate crisis demands.

“We are seeing global hunger once again on the rise as a result of climate change. We’ve seen our whole country hurting from another summer of extreme weather. And right now communities across Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi are recovering from Cyclone Idai – one of the worst extreme weather disasters ever to hit the southern hemisphere.

“Every small increase in warming means greater hunger, more people forced from their land and homes, and going backwards in hard-won battles against poverty and inequality.

“While clearly a marked improvement on the Coalition’s approach and a solid foundation to build on, Labor must recognise that far more is needed if we’re to play our part in limiting warming to 1.5C – a matter of survival for some of our Pacific neighbours.

“We are encouraged to see Labor firmly rule out using Kyoto carry-over units to meet its 2030 emissions reduction target, and commit to putting in place a raft of measures across different sectors to drive the transition towards zero carbon pollution.

“Overall, the plan begins the process of reversing decades of backward steps by Australia. It promises to restore vital institutions like the Climate Change Authority and revive cooperation on climate change with the international community.

“As a next step, we encourage Labor to review its existing 2030 emissions reduction target, in line with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Special Report on limiting warming to 1.5C and recognising the profound implications for vulnerable communities across our region.

“Most disappointingly, the plan is largely silent on moving beyond Australia’s coal exports – our single biggest contribution to the climate crisis – including ruling out Adani’s proposed mine.”

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