[MEDIA STATEMENT] Biden win means time for Australian climate step-up

bradkerin Media Release

Biden win means time for Australian climate step-up

The Morrison Government can build on recent positive actions in a climate step-up to match accelerating global climate action now to be joined by a Biden US administration as a Pacific deadline looms.

“President-elect Biden’s commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050 means 70% of Australia’s trading partners will be gearing their economies and trading relationship, Australia can help build that momentum as it makes good on a Pacific promise to share a 2050 strategy by end of 2020,” said John Connor, CEO of the Carbon Market Institute.

“The Morrison Government has recently made positive practical and pragmatic reforms to the administration of its Emission Reduction Fund carbon market, set clean technology priorities and committed to extend vital institutions like the CEFC and ARENA.

“The Government can now give greater guidance to investors and business by joining the US, China, Japan, South Korea, EU, UK and Pacific neighbours steering their economies to this 2050 net-zero emissions goal. 

“There are other reforms that can assist business to seize the enormous economic opportunities available in this transition such as evolving the Safeguard Mechanism guiding management of Australia’s biggest emitters.”

Last year at the Pacific Island Forum Australia joined the call for all countries to develop mid-century emissions strategies by 2020[1]. The Forum meets next month as the world celebrates the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement.

“President Trump’s surprise 2016 election sideswiped global collective action but global geopolitical climate action has undergone a resurgence with 2021 now set to put a major focus on climate action and credibility.

“The Morrison Government has begun to acknowledge Australia’s economic opportunities in renewable energy, hydrogen and carbon sequestration, it can and should build on that with a clear 2050 target for net-zero emissions and policies guiding business and investment to that target.”

“President Biden can swiftly re-join the Paris Agreement which was carefully crafted with a challenging US Congress in mind. A tight Senate may restrict the Biden Agenda somewhat but there is much that can and will be done as President Biden joins other global leaders focusing on climate action. This includes the U.K’s Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson host of the COP26 climate talks to be held in December 2021 who highlighted the UK and US “shared priorities from climate change to trade and security” in his congratulatory message to President-elect Biden this morning..

The Carbon Market Institute hosts the Australasian Emission Reduction Summit with the 7th annual event to be held 2-4 December. The Summit will be addressed by hon. Alok Sharma COP26 President and UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Dame Meg Taylor, Secretary General of the Pacific Island Forum and many other speakers with more to be announced this week.

The Carbon Market Institute is the independent industry association for business leading the transition to net-zero emissions. CMI has more than 85 corporate members.