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Video Chapters —
00:00 – Intro
00:20 – What can governments do to tackle climate change?
01:00: The Net Zero Plan
01:51 – Electric Vehicle Strategy
02:23 – What is the UK doing?
03:03 – What is the US doing?
03:34 – What is the EU doing?
03:51 – Where does Australia rank?
04:14 – What do you think?
In our last video, we ran through what individuals could do to decrease their carbon footprint and take meaningful climate action. It was things like changing the car you drive, electrifying your home, and looking into solar panels. On top of this, you can also take control of where your money is being invested in things like superannuation funds. Today we’re looking at what governments can be doing to limit warming in the atmosphere.
Young people are losing faith and young people are scared for our future and you need to take immediate action. Or we will continue to lose faith and lose hope in who’s representing us.
There are a range of policy levers available to governments across the world and the Glasgow Climate Conference showed us how varied these approaches can be.
What was so disappointing for us was the way it appeared that your Prime Minister really doesn’t understand the urgency of what we have to do.
Australians want a plan. The plan plan. Clang, clang, clang, clang, clang, clang. Our plan is a fair plan.
So what’s in Australia’s plan? The Morrison government has committed to adding no greenhouse gases overall to the atmosphere, hence net zero. It doesn\’t necessarily mean not emitting any carbon dioxide. It just means balancing it out. So the net position is zero. This forms part of a broader policy objective of the government that is dictated by technology, not taxes.
This means the government has committed to reducing emissions by investing in new technologies and developing new low emissions technology policies and regulations. Significantly, no aspect of this climate policy is legislated. That means there\’s no law that has passed Parliament that forces the government to take the action they\’ve promised. Since COP26 wrapped up, the Morrison government has announced a new electric car strategy with $178 million in new funding.
The Future Fuels and Vehicles Strategy will involve partnering with the private sector to fund 50,000 charging stations in Australian homes, as well as increasing the number of fast charging stations across urban and regional centers. While you might be able to easily charge your Tesla, there was no talk around making EVs more affordable through tax incentives, minimum emission standards or sales targets, as pointed out by the Electric Vehicle Council.
If we look to the rest of the world, what does government action on climate look like in other settings? In the UK, which is led by Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the net zero by 2050 target was legislated in 2019. The UK has also pledged to cut emissions by at least 68% below 1990 levels by 2030 and 78% by 2035.
On top of this, the British government has committed to fully decarbonize electricity by 2035. The phasing out of sale of fossil fuel cars by 2030 and the rapid electrification of transport industry and heating. That\’s something we talked about in our last video. The UK is also a world leader in generating energy with offshore wind turbines in the US.
Joe Biden rejoins the Paris climate agreement on his first day in office. Since then, the US has committed to net zero by 2050 at the latest.
We need a unified national response to climate change.
However, like Australia, this target has not been enshrined in law. In terms of its 2030 target, the US has committed to reducing emissions by 50 to 52% by the end of the decade. The Biden administration has also set a goal to make half of all vehicles sold in 2030 zero emission cars across the pond. The European Union has a target to achieve climate neutrality by 2050, which is essentially the same as net zero.
This is a legally binding agreement and has an emissions reductions target of at least 55% by 2030 below the 1990 levels. So how did we rank? We came last out of 64 countries for our climate policies in the latest climate change performance index. Despite the government\’s recently announced commitment to net zero by 2050, in other categories, Australia ranks 52nd out of 64 countries for renewables, 54th for energy use and 56 for greenhouse gas emissions.
So what do you think? Are you satisfied with the action on climate change the government has taken? Let us know what you think in the comments section below and subscribe for more videos on.