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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Morrison Net Zero 2050 Plan a fraud, with plans to double coal exports, new gas expansion

Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor with 'Net zero Plan' slide

Prime Minister Scott Morrison accompanied by Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor announced Australia's commitment to Net Zero by 2050. But there will be no change to the 26-28% emissions reduction target by 2030 that was submitted in 2015 to the Paris Agreement.

ABC political analyst Laura Tingle commented "All this time to wait for a 15 page slide set with literally nothing new in it...." and "The plan is based on our existing policies".

Australia is taking a technology not taxes meet and cheat projection to Glasgow, which is another way of climate delay and denial while expanding fossil fuel production

"You will be supported by our data projection that will see us exceed our 2030 target with emissions reduction of up to 35% by 2030. We will keep our commitment, though, when it comes to our pledge that we made, and took to the last election of 26 to 28%, but we will meet it, and we will beat it. And we’ll beat it with emissions reductions we believe about the 35%." said Morrison. 

Yeah the work of all the states will see Australia achieve 37-42% emissions reduction. Federal Government doing SFA according to modelling on 2030 climate targets.

"This is the right plan for Australia – to summarise the outcome from it, which we’ll see in the plan, Australians $2,000 better off on average in 2050 compared with no Australian action." says Angus Taylor. 

But acting fast with renewables with strong 2030 targets showed citizens would be $5000 better off according to Business Council of Australia report. Guardian Australia Politics Live

Find below Ministerial press release, video of the press conference, some twitter commentary, and statements by Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese and shadow Climate spokesperson Chris Bowen.

Why is Climate Change a Controversial Topic in Aus Politics? | Richie Merzian on Deutsche Welle:

Media release from Prime Minister and Energy Minister

The Morrison Government will act in a practical, responsible way to deliver net zero emissions by 2050 while preserving Australian jobs and generating new opportunities for industries and regional Australia.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor today released Australia’s Long Term Emissions Reduction Plan (the Plan), to deliver net zero emissions by 2050.

The technology-driven plan sets out a credible pathway to net zero by 2050, while preserving our existing industries, establishing Australia as a leader in low emissions technologies, and positioning our regions to prosper.

The Plan is based on our existing policies and will be guided by five principles that will ensure Australia’s shift to a net zero economy will not put industries, regions or jobs at risk.

The principles are: technology not taxes; expand choices not mandates; drive down the cost of a range of new technologies; keep energy prices down with affordable and reliable power; and, be accountable for progress.

The Plan focuses on driving down technology costs and accelerating their deployment at scale across the economy. 

Over the next decade, our existing $20 billion investment in low emissions technology is expected to unlock at least $80 billion of total private and public investment, including in clean hydrogen, carbon capture and storage and energy storage.

The Plan also identifies the potential for continued technology advances and breakthroughs to unlock ultra low cost solar. As part of the annual update to the Technology Investment Roadmap, we have set a stretch goal of solar electricity generation at $15 per megawatt hour (MWh). Australia is a world leader in renewable energy, and cheap, clean electricity is integral to lowering emissions in the electricity sector and other industries in Australia.

The Plan shows how our priority technologies will deliver 85 per cent of the emissions reductions necessary to achieve net zero by 2050. This is achieved through our strong track record, with emissions already more than 20 per cent lower than 2005 levels, the Technology Investment Roadmap which will reduce emissions by around 40 per cent, global technology trends that will reduce emissions by 15 per cent, and high-integrity offsets that will achieve at least a further 10 per cent reduction.

It recognises the role future technology breakthroughs will play in closing the gap, with new and emerging technologies to reduce emissions by a further 15 per cent by 2050.

The Plan rules out taxes or a legislated mechanism, because these regressive approaches would impose costs on households, businesses and regions least able to afford them.

It includes five-yearly reviews that will enable us to evaluate progress, and adapt to advances in technology.

The Prime Minister said the Plan would continue to reduce Australia’s emissions while keeping our economy growing, maintaining affordable, reliable energy, and ensuring our regions remain strong.

“Australia now has a target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, and we have a clear plan for achieving it,” the Prime Minister said. “The Plan outlines responsible, practical action to achieve net zero that is in our national interest. 

“The Plan will deliver results through technology, not taxes. It respects people’s choice, and will not force mandates on what people can do or buy. It guarantees that we keep downward pressure on energy prices and secures reliable power. It will ensure Australia continues to serve traditional markets, while taking advantage of new economic opportunities.

“The Plan has the prosperity and wellbeing of regional Australia at its core. We have an opportunity to act now to harness existing regional strengths, unlock new areas of growth, and diversify economic activity in regions. We will invest in rural and regional Australia to ensure it succeeds and is protected under the Plan.

“Australia will continue to build on our record of reducing emissions and achieve our targets in the Australian way.”

Minister Taylor said Australia’s emissions reduction story had been one of consistent achievement, and the Plan had been designed for Australia.

“Our Plan continues the policies and initiatives that we have already put in place and that have proven to be successful, while preserving existing industries and jobs, and supporting regional Australia,” Minister Taylor said.  “It will not shut down coal or gas production, or require displacement of productive agricultural land.

“Between 2005 and 2021, Australia’s emissions fell by 20.8 per cent, outpacing the reductions of the United States, Canada and New Zealand, and every other major commodity exporting nation in the world. The most recent forecast shows we will cut our emissions by up to 35 per cent by 2030.

“Under our Plan, the Technology Investment Roadmap and global trends will see Australia reduce its emissions by 85 per cent by 2050. We are committed to closing the gap to net zero over the next three decades in a way that is consistent with Liberal Party and National Party values.

“Our Plan is built on a set of key principles; the most important being technology, not taxes. Unlike Labor, we won’t introduce a carbon tax that drives Australian jobs overseas and punishes the most vulnerable in our community through higher prices for electricity and other essentials.”

Latest official projections released today show Australia is on track to reduce emissions by up to 35 per cent by 2030, well above our target of 26 to 28 per cent.

The Plan will maintain this momentum.

The Plan can be found at:

More information at: and link to projections.

Scott Morrison  did not accept the “premise of this question” by journalist

Q: Pacific neighbours have said there will be a catastrophe if Australia doesn’t set an example and commit to harder 2030 cuts. What do you say to those neighbouring countries now that you’ve appeased the National party and left their futures effectively under threat in low lying areas?

Morrison: Well, I actually just don’t accept the premise of your question at all. I think you’re wrong. What we’ve done is produced the right plan for Australia, and I think it’s the right plan for our region.

Comment on Australia's emissions trend in Net Zero Plan

This slide from the presentation requires some commentary. Scope 1 and 2 emissions produced in production of any goods for export are clearly Australian emissions. To imply that these should not be considered is simply ludicrious and cheap spin. 

Secondly the total emissions (Paris target accounting) includes Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) emissions which most countries do not count. These emissions are included because Australia through a tantrem in 1997 and threatened to walk-out of climate talks. This is the Australia Clause in action. Our carbon accounting baseline years were chosen initially as 1990 and 2005, both high years for LULUCF emissions. It's one of the ways Australia cheats with carbon accounting.

Thirdly, the reduction in emissions from the land sector are pretty rubbery. Many carbon credits for deforestation could be 'nothing more than hot air', report finds. One in five carbon credits issued by the Federal Government’s $4.5 billion Emission Reduction Fund (ERF) do not represent real abatement and are essentially ‘junk’ credits, according to new research by the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Australia Institute.

“Our findings demonstrate that the avoided deforestation method—which makes up one in five of all Australian carbon credits—is deeply flawed. The Committee’s review should have reached this conclusion at the beginning of the Morrison Government’s term.

“Protecting and regenerating nature in Australia is an important part of the climate solution. Methodologies must be designed with integrity to ensure benefits to nature and the climate are being realised.

“The Morrison Government should be embarrassed by its flagship climate policy. Australians want real climate action, not cheap tricks and hot air,”  Lead Environmental Investigator at the Australian Conservation Foundation Annica Schoo said.

So the Australia Institute in May 2021 produced a report on Australia doing less than other countries on climate emissions, what it looks like without LULUCF emissions, which clearly shows Federal government has failed in regulating emissions in the Climate Solutions Fund or other mechanisms.

The easiest way to test whether Australia is on a path to net zero — as the Prime Minister
claims — is to exclude the land sector, and the impacts of the drought and the pandemic from
the national inventory. This can be done by removing land and agriculture emissions and
confining the period of analysis to the end of 2019. As Figure 2 shows, over the period 2005 to
2019, Australia’s emissions, excluding the land and agriculture sectors, increased by 7 per cent,
or approximately 0.5 per cent per annum. 

So how does Australia's emissions profile compare with major trading partners without LULUCF emissions? While emissions from 2007 after election of Rudd Labor Government slowed. plateaued, then briefly dived during 2 years of carbon pricing under the Guillard Labor Government. The last 8 years under the Abbott, Turnbull, Morrison Coalition Governments Australian emissions have been rising. In the same period the United States, European Union and United Kingdom have all had falling emissions (with a slight hiccup under Trump)

Comments from the twitterverse

Richie Merzian tweet:

Daniel Bleakley tweet:

Response from  Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese 

We haven’t seen the modelling, and we haven’t had the detail. Because there is net zero modelling, net zero legislation and net zero unity.

Scott Morrison left to the last possible minute to outline a scam that leaves everything to the last possible minute.

But in their own words, there is nothing new in this plan.

The word plan doesn’t constitute a plan no matter how often he said and what form it’s printed.

As always, with this Prime Minister, it is all about marketing. All about the spend, never about the substance.

If this plan was really supported by the whole of the Coalition, then Barnaby Joyce would have launched it with the Prime Minister.

But we know that is not supported by the Deputy Prime Minister, is not supported by the National’s leader in the Senate, is not supported by Keith Pitt, the resources Minister and it was a supported by Minister Gillespie either.

The fact is that the only reason why there is no going to be legislation about net zero by 2050, it isn’t because there is a risk that it won’t be carried because labour would vote for net zero by 2050, it is because the Coalition would be embarrassed by the number of their own members who would cross the floor.

...Now, we know that the only policy detail we have seen up to this point is that Keith Pitt has been promoted to the cabinet. That is it. The only new policy detail. There is no new funding announced today, just Keith Pitt promotion and an idea that somehow the Productivity Commission will have a look at documentation every five years about how it’s going. It was really about nothing today and that says it all about this government.

The Prime Minister announced a vibe today rather than a target. It’s all in the vibe of what’s happening and we will wait and see in terms of the details of course, you won’t given any detail.

And of course, we haven’t been either.

What we have said very clearly, is that we would await Glasgow and what comes out of Glasgow before we finalise all of our policies before - but when it comes but we won’t wait to announce any of our policies has rewiring the nation. I asked in Parliament yesterday, will the Prime Minister adopt that?

Fixing electricity, transmission and making it fit for purpose for the 21st century is low hanging fruit. Is something that the Government could doing now, they are doing snowy 2.0 and it’s not even going to be plugged in to the grid. It says it all about the laziness when it comes to this government.

We will announce our policies after Glasgow, I’ve been consistent about that, the whole way through and in the meantime, we’ve announced rewiring the nation, we’ve announced new partnerships, community batteries, we’ve announced are cheaper electric vehicle policy comprehensive policies that will make a difference, we will continue to announce a series of policies that are signed off by us as a Labor opposition but we will finalise a number of matters after Glasgow and it will be well known before the election. Glasgow is pretty important.

That has been the whole focus... With due respect, this government has been there for almost nine years. And literally, two days before the Prime Minister jets off to Glasgow for the most important international conference on climate change this century, he has come up with this non- policy which has no new initiatives.

Seriously, this government, this government today, again, have not released any modelling, they have not released any new initiatives, and in their own words, this plan is based on our existing policies, so they themselves have stood up today, and said nothing to see here.

Response from Chris Bowen, Labor's climate and Energy Spokeperson

’ve seen more detail on fortune cookies than on the documents released by the government. This is the biggest challenge facing the planet and the biggest opportunity facing Australia. It requires leadership and detail plans but all we have today was the slides, slogans and no solutions.

As Anthony said, the only new thing is a pay rise for Keith Pitt. They’ve introduced an emissions trading promotions policy. That’s all we’ve got.

This is a government who after eight years of climate wrecking today, they are simply delaying again. All we’ve seen after six years is still the same target, Tony Abbott’s target and our projection that we might do 2% better.

At least, Tony Abbott had the courage to make a target and he was a climate change denial. At least he had a medium target, at least he said he would have a target over the medium term to the world’s climate change conferences.

While we got from this government is just more of the same.

What we have done is engage in policy development and announcement, already announced, electric vehicles tax, community batteries, already announced new energy, rewiring the nation policy, we will continue with the process.

But we get this scare from the government that somehow legislation is bad, as Anthony said, they are worried about the embarrassment and somehow legislation is bad.

Well [are] Boris Johnson’s government that legislated net zero, Angela Merkel’s government that legislated net zero, that the French government that legislated net zero are engaging in the destruction of their industries? And how would he explain that in Glasgow?

What was all today, wasn’t a plan, it was a scam. It’s not a plan for the future of the country, it’s a political copout.

Media Commentary:

Adam Morton, Climate and environment editor at the Guardian, outlines five key points about the Net Zero by 2050 'plan'.

1. There are no new policies. Extraordinarily, given it has been in the works for years, Australia has released a long-term emissions reduction plan that contains no new emissions reduction policies.

2. There is no actual plan. Technology will save us. The big theme is that, against the global trend, nothing will be compulsory. Basically, the government will pay for some technologies and some incentives to emitting industries, and the market – business and consumer choice – will do the rest.

3. It relies heavily on offsets and carbon capture. As mentioned above, the plan assumes offsets will play a major part in reaching net zero. It is not clear to what extent government and businesses, acting voluntarily, will be expected to pay for them.

4. It describes liquified natural gas – a fossil fuel – as ‘clean’. And as “low emissions”. Neither is true (unless it is combined with CCS, which to date happens at only one, troubled Australian site – Chevron’s Gorgon project – where only a fraction of the total emissions are captured and stored underground).

5. Barely a 1% annual emissions cut is expected to 2030. Along with the net zero plan, the government also put out its annual emissions projections – basically, where existing policies are expected to put the country in 2030.

Do read the full article at The Guardian


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