Australia commits to 2050 net zero emissions target
Sydney, Australia, Oct 26 (EFE).- The Australian government pledged on Tuesday to reach net zero emissions by 2050, ahead of the COP26 climate summit that begins this weekend in Scotland.
“At Glasgow I will confirm that Australia will continue to play our part. We will set a target to achieve net zero by 2050, and have a clear plan for achieving it,” said Prime Minister Scott Morrison in an opinion piece published on his website.
The leader of Australia, one of the world’s most polluting countries if its exports of fossil fuels are counted, said that neutral emissions will be achieved through investments in low-energy technologies such as hydrogen and low-cost solar, while supporting heavy industries such as mining to remain competitive.
“We will do this the Australian way. Through technology, not taxes,” Morrison wrote, clarifying that his government however will maintain its target of reducing polluting emissions from 26 to 28 percent by 2030, compared to 2005 levels.
Morrison argued that in Glasgow he will emphasize that Australia has reduced its emissions by more than 20 percent since 2005.
“That is more than New Zealand, Canada, Japan and the United States. We have beaten our 2020 emissions reduction target and are well on our way to meet and beat our 2030 target,” said Morrison, who is under strong international pressure to make a climate commitment.
“We won’t be lectured by others who do not understand Australia,” he added.
Last week, the report “From Paris to Glasgow: A World on the Move” by the Climate Council, an independent organization of Australian experts, noted that even if the country achieves emissions neutrality by 2050, it would still lag behind, unless it reduces them further this decade.
“Almost all developed countries have committed to net zero emissions by 2050, and substantially strengthened their 2030 targets ahead of Glasgow (…) Meanwhile, Australia remains a fossil fuel giant, with coal and gas industries that are among the world’s biggest drivers of climate change,” it said.
The Climate Council report recommended that Australia reduce its emissions by 75 percent by 2030 and that it reach net zero by 2035. EFE