After many of the major bushfires in Australia have died down, discussions about how to address climate change policy going forward is dividing Australian politicians even within the Coalition government. Global warming is making extreme weather events around the world more severe, with the most recent wildfire season seen as an example of this.
On Wednesday, MPs were discussing if there was a need for a designated climate change minister, to which Prime Minister Scott Morrison replied he would not be “bullied” into more climate action.
In fact, Australia is already embarking on an ambitious journey to grow renewable energy generation to 50 percent by 2030. At the same time, Australia is home to large agricultural and fossil fuels industries – many of the goods mainly designated for export – where emissions are growing.
According to the latest calculations, overall CO² emissions in the country will start falling again as a result of the renewable energy plan after experiencing a slight uptick since 2016. The numbers by the Department for Environment and Energy show that the plan would result in overall emissions to drop by 16 percent between 2005 and 2030 – short of the government's goal of 26 to 28 percent. Since Australia has incurred so-called carry-over credits under previous emission reduction protocols, the country would still be on track to meet its goals under the Paris Agreement in 2030.