Government celebrates emissions reductions

Rebecca Gredley
(Australian Associated Press)


Australia’s emissions trackers are firmly focused on the Paris targets as the government celebrates beating earlier goals.

As the clock struck midnight the Kyoto period officially came to a close, heralding the start of the Paris agreement era.

Energy Minister Angus Taylor said initial estimates show the government has beaten its 2020 goal by 11430 million tonnes, or about 80 per cent of a year’s emissions.

The 2020 goal was a five per cent reduction on 2000 levels.

Mr Taylor says Australians should be proud.

“Australia is committed to playing our role to reduce global emissions and we will do this without imposing new costs on households, businesses or the economy,” he said.

The next goal is the Paris target, which is a 26 to 28 per cent reduction on 2005 level emissions by 2030.

The Morrison government plans to use credit from meeting an earlier emissions reduction goal towards that target.

The government’s own climate change agency has urged against using the carryover credits.

The Paris agreement also includes a commitment to achieving net emissions by 2050, but the government has remained mum on such plans.

The nation’s targets:

  • Kyoto 1 – An eight per cent rise from 1990 levels by 2008/12. Emissions instead increased by three per cent on the baseline.
  • Kyoto 2 – A 0.5 per cent reduction on 1990 levels by 2020.
  • Australia’s own target – five per cent below 2000 levels by 2020.
  • Paris target – 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

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