Climate change economic management scorecard Media Release

Nov 20, 2007 - 10:57am

The Climate Institute today released the first ever assessment of the economic credentials of the major parties policies on climate change.

The Climate Institute has looked at the way in which both parties intend to manage climate costs, promote the lowest cost solutions to climate change and encourage investment in low carbon infrastructure. Based on these three areas the Coalition scored 28% and the ALP scored 55%.

"Climate Change long ago ceased being just an environmental issue. Reducing the cost of climate changes impacts, creating incentives for families, individuals and business to invest in low cost solutions, and driving a new wave of investment in low carbon infrastructure are central issues for Australia’s economic future.” Said Climate Institute Chief Executive John Connor.

“Uncontrolled and dangerous climate change risks key sectors of the Australian economy. The hotter, drier and more arid climate is already costing Australia billions of dollars and slowing economic growth. The 2002-03 drought alone cost US$7.6 billion.”

Tourism is another sector under imminent threat.  In the 2004-5 financial year the tourism associated with the Great Barrier Reef was worth US$4.5 billion and provided 63,000 full time (equivalent) jobs.

“Good economic management means minimising climate impacts by supporting an international plan to reverse rising global greenhouse pollution by 2015, and planning and investing in adaptation strategies so we can adjust to the climate change already in the pipeline.”

“To ensure families and business don’t pay more than they need to reduce emissions, government policies need to provide incentives for the least cost solutions, such as internationally compatible emissions trading and strong energy efficiency measures. A plan to unleash business innovation and deliver a new wave of low carbon infrastructure will also position Australia in the new global clean energy economy and reduce the long-term cost of reducing greenhouse pollution.”

“Both major parties have committed to emissions trading and clean or renewable energy targets that will help reduce the short and long term costs of reducing greenhouse pollution. The ALP scores better overall largely through its support for the Kyoto framework which offers low cost reductions though international emissions trading and provides incentives for investments in developing countries to reduce emissions. The ALP has also committed to stronger policies to drive a new wave of low emission energy infrastructure in Australia.”

Read the report online 



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