A month which began with the latest update of the climate science from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ended with the latest update of Australia’s Greenhouse Gas Inventory. The former came with few surprises but deepened the certainty behind climate impacts and the urgency of action.
The latest Inventory shows continued declines in Australia’s electricity emissions as renewables rise; COVID related declines in transport emissions; but largely stubbornly significant figures for industrial processes and agriculture. Land use changes that have been the biggest contributor to Australia’s net emissions decline, moving into net-negative or carbon sequestration in 2015, have plateaued since 2017.
Against this backdrop it was timely that Australia began the conversation about reforming the “Safeguard Mechanism” that requires our bigger emitters to measure, manage and occasionally enter the carbon market to purchase carbon reduction. The Government released its consultation paper on a potential new carbon credit for voluntary action while the Grattan Institute highlighted the potential for the mechanism to be a key driver in industrial decarbonisation – a position CMI supports.
The agricultural and land-use parts of this backdrop are also important as we head into our 5th National Carbon Farming Industry Forum and as CMI and members work with the government on new soil carbon, blue carbon and plantation carbon crediting methods and recommend new method priorities. Carbon farming for carbon credits and neutrality is a vital opportunity not only in assisting agriculture play a role in Australia achieving net-zero emissions before 2050, but also in ensuring access to international markets for our agricultural exports.
New carbon credit method priorities will be revealed with next month’s annual update of the Government’s Low Emission Technology Roadmap which seems likely to align with the long-awaited release of its Long-Term Emission Strategy just ahead of COP26 climate negotiations in Glasgow in early November. The end of the year is coming with a rush!
Before then CMI is seeking a Manager for our Policy and Advocacy efforts and has opened nominations for Board positions. Details on those are below and for the Chloe Munro scholarships for transformational leadership. CMI is delighted to support this initiative for women drawing inspiration from Chloe’s remarkable contributions. And we are finalising our annual flagship industry survey (please check your inbox and make sure your voice is heard).
Hoping you are all staying sane and safe amidst COVID lockdowns and turmoil.
Carbon Market Institute