Parliament should make Government come clean on climate Media Release

Nov 13, 2013 - 9:04am

The Climate Institute called on Parliament to make the Coalition Government come clean on its climate policy and commitments before repealing carbon laws that can credibly contribute in helping achieve Australia’s national interest in avoiding dangerous global warming. 

"The Government is blowing smoke and distraction around its climate intentions, so Parliament needs to clear the air before going down the path of turning Australia  into the world’s first country to dismantle laws that price and limit carbon pollution,” said John Connor, CEO The Climate Institute. 

“Yesterday the Prime Minister appeared to break a long standing promise to the Australian public and to the international community by smashing a bipartisan consensus on conditions for moving towards credible carbon pollution reduction targets.” 

"Since 2009, the Coalition has maintained it shares the same conditions for moving 2020 targets from 5 per cent reductions below our 2000 levels to 25 per cent below.” (See Media Brief documenting this commitment.)  

“A fortnight ago, the independent Climate Change Authority said the 5 per cent 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." 

“Other countries aren’t waiting for binding international commitments to reduce pollution and invest in low carbon technologies – they are moving forward on their own accord. Australia has made international commitments to act in light with action of other countries. But our current action, and even 5 per cent reductions, is inadequate when compared to countries like the US and China.” 

"Either the Prime Minister or Parliament should clear up whether there has been a change in the conditions that have been a bipartisan basis of our climate diplomacy.” 

“With the Government’s alternative climate policy just at discussion paper stage, Parliament should also not vote to repeal current laws, which though not perfect, can credibly achieve strong pollution reductions of 25 per cent.” 

“The Climate Institute calls on the ALP, Greens and crossbenches to put the repeal legislation, as well as the Government’s alternative, through full and rigorous parliamentary scrutiny, including Senate committee investigation, before making any changes.” 

“The Australian Parliament should do its job and hold the Government to account on past promises and proposals and  Parliament should make the Government come clean on its climate policy and commitments.”   

For more information 

Kristina Stefanova, Communications Director, The Climate Institute, 02 8239 6299

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