Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Abbott Government's Clean Energy Future Plan expected to increase Australia's greenhouse gas emissions by 49-57% before 2021

This is what Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott told The Guardian on 13 November 2014 when questioned about the Coalition Government’s Direct Action Plan and Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF):

“We are actually cutting our emissions and as a result of the Direct Action policy, which passed through our parliament in the last couple of weeks, I am absolutely confident that we will deliver on our target of a 5% cut by 2020. This is what we want – we want real action and that’s exactly what the world will get from Australia.”

This is Climate Action Tracker’s assessment of the Direct Action Plan on 11 December 2014:

In a world first for climate policy, the Australian Government repealed core elements of Clean Energy Future Plan, effectively abolishing the carbon pricing mechanism, sought to reduce the Australian renewable target, and block other clean energy and climate policy measures in Australia. The carbon pricing mechanism introduced had been working effectively, with emissions from the electricity and other covered sectors reducing by about 7% per annum.

Up until the time of repeal, the implemented climate policy was effective and was projected to have been sufficient to meet Australia’s unconditional Copenhagen pledge for a 5% reduction from 2000 levels by 2020. Our new, post-repeal assessment shows, however, that this target is no longer in reach and the currently proposed new legislation will result in emissions increasing by 49-57% above 1990 levels. Set against Australia’s pledge base year of 2000, the repeal of the climate legislation by Australia will likely lead to an increase of about 12-18% above year 2000 base level emissions, rather than the 5% reduction pledged….

Figure 1 - Historic emissions, Copenhagen pledge, Kyoto commitments, and current emission trends in Australia
Click on image to enlarge

Full Climate Action Tracker assessment here.

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