WWF-Australia has renewed its support for a national Climate Change Bill proposed by independent MP Zali Steggall, following the release of a lower house committee report that refused to support the legislation.
The committee found that Australia’s climate action is adequate.
Ms Steggall released a dissenting report, saying the government needs a net zero emissions target for 2050 and she intends to push for a vote on the bill before the UN Climate Change Conference in November.
WWF-Australia’s CEO Dermot O’Gorman said Australia needs to raise its climate ambitions.
“Acting on climate change has turned into a partisan issue, but that is not the case in other places like the UK. Action is about the future of our economy and the future of the places we love,” said Mr O’Gorman.
“The 2019-20 bushfires revealed our true vulnerability to the looming climate crisis.
“Australia’s major trading partners such as Japan, South Korea, China, the UK and the US have all committed to net zero emissions by 2050. This leaves us increasingly isolated from the rest of the world on climate action.
“We must signal to the world that we’re serious about tackling climate change by supporting this 2050 net zero legislation.”
If implemented the bill would legislate a 2050 net zero target and require the government to set a rolling emissions budget to meet it. It would also introduce risk assessment and adaptation plans, and establish an independent climate change commission.
“This bill offers a sensible legislative framework for climate actions. It would help pave the way for practical solutions to reduce our climate risk through renewables as well as measures to build resilience to climate shock,” said Mr O’Gorman.
“A 2050 net zero target has widespread support from business, farmers, industry and civil society and will accelerate efforts to decarbonise each sector of our economy.”
WWF-Australia made a submission in support of the Climate Change Bill and testified to the lower house committee’s inquiry into the legislation.
People can show their support for the Climate Bill and sign the petition at climateactnow.com.au