Sydney, Australia, Oct 21 (EFE).- Australia has the worst record regarding action on climate among developed countries, according to a report released Thursday by experts in Australia.
The report comes ahead of the UN climate summit, or COP 26, in the Scottish city of Glasgow in November.
The report “From Paris to Glasgow: A world on the move” by the Climate Council, an independent organization of Australian experts, assessed developed countries’ greenhouse gas emissions and their commitments toward a transition from fossil fuels to clean energy.
“China (is) racing to gain advantage in the global energy transition and even their defense planning. Meanwhile, Australia remains a fossil fuel giant, with coal and gas industries that are among the world’s biggest drivers of climate change,” underlined the report.
Australia – whose government has so far not committed itself to achieving net neutral emissions by 2050 unlike the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union – is one of the world’s leading polluters nations, given their fossil-fuel exports.
Under strong international pressure, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has been negotiating an emission neutrality commitment ahead of the COP26 summit.
Still, the study’s lead author and climate council research chief Simon Bradshaw said that although Australia is committed to achieving neutral emissions by 2050, it would still lag behind, unless it ensures that it further reduces emissions in this decade.
“This is a defining moment in the world’s response to climate change, and Australia remains the villain, and an outlier in the international community,” said Bradshaw.
Australia currently is committed to reduce its emissions by 26-28 percent by 2030, compared to 2005 levels, a target that pales against those of the United Kingdom, which promises to reduce them by 68 percent, the United States (50-52 percent) and the European Union (55 percent).
The report recommended that Australia reduce its polluting emissions by 75 per cent by that date and reach net neutrality by 2035.
The Climate Council also recommended that Australia stop funding coal, gas and oil projects, and increase aid to support climate action by developing countries. EFE