The exceptional heat that broke April weather records around the country last week are the latest indication that while the Turnbull Government sits on its hands, the realities of climate change are getting increasingly worse.
Last week’s extreme heat prompted the Bureau of Meteorology to release a Special Climate Statement to document the severity of the climate change impacts we’re seeing today, saying the heat “was more characteristic of mid-summer than mid-autumn, was unprecedented in many areas in April for its intensity, its persistence or both”.
The reality is Australia is experiencing more frequent and intense extreme weather events, and extreme events are only projected to get even worse in future.
Taking real action on climate change is crucial to meeting our Paris commitments to keep global warming well below 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels.
Yet the Turnbull Government’s National Energy Guarantee proposes to limit pollution cuts in the electricity sector to 26 per cent above 2005 levels by 2030. These weak targets will stifle renewable energy investment and place a huge burden on other sectors of the economy like manufacturing and agriculture to cut pollution.
Even industry thinks the government’s pollution reduction targets are too weak, with the Australian Industry Group saying “deeper targets will be needed to deliver Australia’s fair part of a successful international effort to keep global temperature increases to less than 2°C above preindustrial levels”.
Josh Frydenberg has said “The future of energy policy must be determined by the proper consideration of the public’s best interest not ideologically driven predisposition” but the fact is Malcolm Turnbull refuses to stand up to the extreme right of his party and implement pollution reduction targets that will support renewable energy investment and deliver on Australia’s climate change obligations under the Paris Accords.
Malcolm Turnbull can’t stand up to Tony Abbott and his hard right. It is just time he got out of the way.
Authorised by Noah Carroll ALP Canberra