Legislating Net Zero

Labor Powering Australia climate change plan is a suite of policies designed to reduce emissions by boosting renewable energy and creating 604,000 jobs.

Included in Powering Australia was our goal of a 2030 emissions reduction target of 43% on 2005 levels. The Government’s Climate Change Bill 2022 will deliver on our election commitment to reduce Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

This 43% is the modelled impact of our policies and is reflected in this legislation. The legislation is not necessary to update Australia’s target, which the Albanese Government has already done with the UN, or to deliver Powering Australia.

But enshrining the target in legislation is best practice to deliver the certainty Australia needs after 10 years of chaos, which is why peak business, community, environmental and union groups all support the move.

The legislation has four key elements, it:

  • Enshrines in law our Nationally Determined Contribution of 43% emissions reduction by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050
  • Tasks the independent Climate Change Authority to provide advice on Australia’s progress against these targets, and to advise on new targets under the Paris Agreement which will include a 2035 target;
  • Requires the Minister for Climate Change to report annually to Parliament on progress in meeting our targets; and
  • Embeds the nation’s targets in the objectives and functions of a range of key government agencies including ARENA, CEFC, Infrastructure Australia and the NAIF.

After a decade of denial and delay from the Abbott/Turnbull/Morrison Government, we now have an opportunity to seize the jobs opportunities from a renewable economy, support the transformation of the regions that have always powered Australia, and put downward pressure on energy prices with affordable renewables, all while reducing emissions.

The Australian people voted to end the climate and energy wars; legislating net zero gives the Australian Parliament the opportunity to do the same.

You can read the bill here.