Energy Minister Angus Taylor has declared Australia remains “committed to the Paris Agreement” and called on other countries to reduce their emissions in his major address to the UN Climate Change conference in Madrid. Mr Taylor said Australia was backing an “unprecedented wave of clean energy investment” totalling $14.1bn last year and that “strong messages and targets alone won’t address climate change”.
Source: Geoff Chambers, News Corp
Angus Taylor backs technology to tackle emissions
On the same day that Scott Morrison defended the government’s climate change policies, Mr Taylor told the COP25 summit “the world needs action to reduce emissions” and that Australia backed technology to lead “the global transition to lower emissions”. He also called on COP25 delegates to finalise arrangements for “Paris Agreement carbon markets that give us confidence that traded carbon units represent genuine emissions reductions”.
“The Paris Agreement sent a powerful signal to the world that countries are serious about climate action. Australia is committed to the Paris Agreement,” he said.
Australia has joined the Leadership Group for Industry Transition, a public-private partnership led by India and Sweden, aimed at reducing emissions in “economically important industrial sectors”, including steel, aluminium, cement, aviation and shipping.
The government will use the group, which also includes Britain, Germany and Korea, to encourage Australian businesses to participate and assist in working to lower emissions. Mr Taylor said global economies would transition to lower emissions “only as fast as the deployment of commercially viable technologies allow”. He also flagged the government would release a long-term strategy to reduce emissions next year, focusing on the deployment of “cost-effective technologies”.
“This means we need to get the right technology to the marketplace when and where it is needed. In Australia, we are developing a Technology Investment Roadmap. The roadmap will establish an enduring, strategic approach to Australia’s clean technology investment,” he said. Citing the government’s national hydrogen strategy and boost to the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, Mr Taylor said renewables supplied more than 25 per cent of the nation’s electricity supply and that Australia had the world’s highest uptake of household solar panels.
“This increase has not been without issues and one of Australia’s challenges is to ensure energy remains affordable and reliable as these changes occur. We cannot move faster than the technology allows,” he said.
“Our long-term strategy to reduce emissions is focused on deploying cost-effective technologies and we will be releasing a more detailed technology strategy next year.”
The strategy will be in addition to the $3.5bn climate solutions package announced earlier this year, aimed at ensuring Australia’s 2030 target is met or exceeded.
On Tuesday, the Prime Minister said the government’s climate change policies were being developed from the “sensible centre”.
“Our actions on climate change are getting the results they’re intended to get — reducing emissions and meeting our targets,” he said. “The policies we’re pursuing capture that sensible centre, which understands our need to balance both meeting the needs of sustainability in our environment and ensuring that we meet the economic needs of our nation.”