IN DROPPING ANY reference to emissions reductions in the National Energy Guarantee (NEG), the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has capitulated to the extreme right on energy and climate policy, according to Climate Action Monaro (CAM).
In a press conference today, the Prime Mister said he would adopt all recommendations of the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) including the scrapping of the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) which has underpinned the roof-top solar revolution and driven down emissions in the electricity sector.
CAM President Ms Jenny Goldie says it is now clear the government had no intention of delivering a science-based approach on emissions reduction.
“It is depressingly evident that Turnbull has been captured by the coal-end of town. The ACCC recommendations leave open the possibility of new coal-fired generators which will be the death knell for effective climate action.
“The extreme right of the Coalition wants to lock in coal in electricity production and destroy any commitments to the Paris Agreement. This is particularly shocking as the signs of climate change are all around us: NSW and Queensland in severe drought; fires raging across the state while it is still winter; half the Great Barrier Reef dead or dying; floods in India killing hundreds; uncontrollable fires in California; heatwaves across the northern hemisphere and even fires within the Arctic Circle,” says Ms Goldie.
“Meanwhile, we know the government has a leaked copy of the report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that is due out in October. The report says that we have to reduce emissions from the electricity sector by 60 percent between 2020 and 2030 if we are to avert dangerous climate change. This makes the abandonment of emissions reduction in NEG all the more shocking.
“The Prime Minister is keen to remove subsidies for renewable energy as witnessed by the scrapping of SRES. But what of subsidies for fossil fuels? In 2015 the IMF projected Australia would subsidise coal, petroleum and gas consumption by $41 billion, almost two percent of GDP.
“If it’s good enough to remove subsidies for rooftop solar, it’s good enough to remove them on petroleum, gas, and coal,” Ms Goldie says.
– Climate Action Monaro. MEDIA RELEASE