LETTER: Australia set to miss Paris target

A NEW United Nations report has found that Australia, along with countries such as Saudi Arabia and the US, is not on track to meet its 2030 Paris climate target.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison keeps repeating the line that we’re going to meet our 2030 target at a canter. But without a credible climate policy, Australia is stuck in the barriers.

Under the Paris Agreement, Australia promised to reduce its emissions by 26-28 per cent by 2030, based on 2005 levels.

But the report says our greenhouse gas pollution levels are projected to “remain at high levels rather than reducing in line with the 2030 target”.

The report makes for sobering reading. It tells us that global carbon emissions increased in 2017 after three years of stagnation.  Australia is one of the worst climate offenders. Our pollution levels have risen three years in a row. 

The goal of the agreement is to keep global temperature rise this century to well below 2C above the level before mass industrialisation.

The UN says nations must effectively triple their pollution-cutting goals if the world hopes to hold warming below 2C.

The message here is that we must move faster and with greater urgency. Australia is on the frontline of climate change and yet we are going to miss our woefully inadequate Paris commitment. 

The Federal Government must ratchet up its response. We need to phase out fossil fuels like coal and accelerate the transition to clean, low-cost renewable energy.

Dr Martin Rice, 

Climate Council acting chief executive

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