Just as the Abbott Government moves to repeal carbon pricing and effectively abandons its commitment to the bipartisan five to 25 percent range of emissions reductions, two new reports have shown that its alternative Direct Action policy will end up increasing Australia’s emissions. The first, from the independent Climate Analytics, has found that the Government’s “one and only commitment” to reduce emissions by five percent on 2000 levels by 2020 is “inadequate”, consistent with a global pathway heading to average temperature rises of 3.5 to 4DegC, and not even likely to succeed as Direct Action will end up increasing emissions by 12 percent. The second, from Reputex, also found that not only will emissions rise by 13 percent under direct action, but that the cost of reductions under the Direct Action will triple to $20 dollars per tonne of carbon emissions. Australia’s backward steps on climate action this week have now earned it two Fossil of the Day awards at the UNFCCC’s COP19.
RT @ClimateSpec: Direct Action will see emissions 11 per cent higher by 2020: analysts http://t.co/013n9xwiLC
- The carbon price would have bent Australia’s upwards emissions curve downwards for the first time, according to Climate Analytics director Dr Bill Hare, but its repeal and replacement with a policy that goes against the science is likely to see a re-carbonisation of the power sector. The Coalition continues to claim it is confident that Direct Action can achieve its (“inadequate”) five percent emissions reductions pledge, but independent studies continue to show that not only is the $3.2 billion allocated to the scheme insufficient to reach the five percent target, but that it will end up increasing emissions to between 12 and 13 percent instead of reducing them.
- Australia’s backward steps on climate action have now earned it two Fossil of the Day awards at the UNFCCC negotiations in Poland, but so far no amount of criticism of its policy, extreme and unprecedented weather events, or scientific and economic research is slowing the Coalition’s push to pull down the legislation and bodies created to combat climate change. While the World Meteorological Organisation says 2013 is on course to be one of the top ten hottest years since recordkeeping began in 1850, and Australia is suffering the most extreme warming, commentators are increasingly noting that the Coalition’s opposition to climate action “is ideological, not logical” and that because of this, “climate change denialists inside and outside the Abbott Government cannot be argued out their position on the matter.”
- Direct Action ‘to increase emissions’ (Business Spectator)
- Canada praises Tony Abbott’s carbon tax repeal bill, says it sends important message (The Australian)
- Greens resisting Labor’s push to delay carbon tax vote (Sydney Morning Herald)
- Direct action’s carbon cost to be triple an emissions trading scheme, analysts says (Sydney Morning Herald)
- Tony Abbott stifling Australia’s climate change ambitions (The Age)
- Will Australia cause a slip on the climate change stepping stones in Warsaw? (The Guardian)
- 2013 ‘one of warmest’ on record (BBC)
- Trying hard to make Direct Action add up (Crikey)
- Australia makes a bad start at Warsaw climate change meeting (The Conversation)
Tools and resources
- Policy brief: Australian climate move would turn climate target into emissions increase (Climate Action Tracker)
- Fossil of the day: Australian carbon price repeal drags country back to the fossil era (CAN)
- PR: Parliament should make Government come clean on climate (Climate Institute)
- Draft report: Reducing Australia’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Targets and Progress Review (CCA)
- Report: Off the Charts: Record breaking October heat & climate change (Climate Council)
- Brief: Coalition commitments to 5-25 percent emissions reductions targets (Climate Institute)
- Factsheet: Exit polling – stronger support for targets than repeal (Climate Institute)
- Factcheck: Households will be $550 a year better off without carbon tax: Wrong (ABC)
Images and Video
- “Australia’s climate legislation was a milestone for the country and it had finally begun to turn a corner on climate change. The legislation would have bent the relentless upward trend of its emissions curve downwards, moving Australia onto the first step toward a low carbon, climate-safe future, and created the governmental machinery needed for upgrading action. The proposed repeal will instead see a likely re-carbonisation of the power sector, the present machinery dismantled – and replaced by a climate policy that goes against the science.” Climate Analytics Director Dr Bill Hare.
- “We have made one commitment and one commitment only, which is to reduce our emissions by five percent.” Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
- “It’s time to draw a line in the sand. We won’t back down or delay. If Tony Abbott wants to make destroying action on global warming his first act, the Greens will make voting it down our first act. We need to expose what a sham Tony Abbott’s whole proposed direct action plan is. There is no plan. It is a slogan. He is full of slogans, he’s full of cheap lines but he’s not prepared to address global warming. And that is the crisis we are facing in this century.” Greens leader Christine Milne.
- “A fortnight ago, the independent Climate Change Authority said the five percent was inadequate and those conditions enabled a much stronger target. Yesterday the Prime Minister spoke of vastly different conditions, which would lock Australia into this inadequate target.” Climate Institute CEO John Connor.
Related Tree Alerts
- Fossil of the Day award win marks inauspicious start for Australia at COP19
- Tragic impact of Super Typhoon Haiyan highlights need for climate action
- Climate Change Authority finds Australia’s 5% emissions target “not credible”
- Tony Abbott ignores research linking bushfires and climate change
- “Climate criminal” Tony Abbott to dismantle carbon laws without credible alternative
- RT @guardianeco: Will Australia cause a slip on the climate change stepping stones in Warsaw? | Graham Readfearn http://t.co/6lJ5pYNfyV
- RT @GetUp: Just three sleeps until the #climate rallies! @DoctorKarl is in – are you? http://t.co/VslkjOVD0D | RSVP @ http://t.co/Oxp8XUBXrx
- RT @gmcnevin: #Australia wins #fossiloftheday (again) for attempted repeal #carbonprice
- http://t.co/IxrW8BxRGu @UN_ClimateTalks #COP19