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Environment, Government Federal

Protecting nature from climate change must be Parliament’s top priority for 2024

Climate Council and Australian Conservation Foundation 3 mins read

The Climate Council and the Australian Conservation Foundation are urgently calling for climate change to be a key focus in the reform of Australia’s national environment law. This follows the release of the Senate inquiry report on the Climate Trigger Bill today.

 

New national polling, commissioned by the Climate Council, shows a strong consensus among Australians for climate change to be embedded in the new Act, with 73% agreeing that our national environment law should be designed to protect the environment from the impacts of climate change. This support surges to 83% among Labor voters.

 

Amanda McKenzie, CEO of the Climate Council, said: "Australians get it: our national environment law should protect our precious natural places from climate change, as one of the biggest threats they face. In 2024 it makes no sense to argue otherwise when climate impacts are already being felt all around us.

 

“We need a national environment law that can stop dangerous, polluting projects and say yes to important renewable and clean industry projects that are done right. Putting climate change at the heart of this law is the answer.

 

“We are in the crucial decade for climate action, and there’s no time to waste. The Albanese Government can deliver real improvements to the law for climate, and the Parliament needs to come together to get this done. Let's see some real cooperation for the sake of Australia's environment as well as our collective futures.”

 

Australian Conservation Foundation CEO Kelly O’Shanassy said: “Australia’s revamped national environment law must be up to the task of responding to the threat climate changes poses to our unique wildlife and places.

 

“It is critical the new national environment protection law includes a clear requirement to consider whether projects are good or bad for the climate as part of the assessment process. Given the damage climate change does to nature, it would be reckless to do otherwise.

 

“There is strong community and parliamentary support for the Albanese government to thoroughly embed climate change considerations into the new law.

 

“Climate change is global, so no matter where in the world Australia’s coal and gas exports are burnt, they damage nature here at home, which is precisely why our environment law must consider potential climate impacts.

 

“Australia’s climate laws are largely irrelevant to the damage done by polluting new coal and gas projects, because most of those emissions occur overseas, but nature is damaged no matter where in the world Australia’s coal and gas is burnt.

 

“The government needs to stop listening to the fossil fuel industry, start listening to the Australian community and commit to work with the Parliament to close the climate gap in our national environment law.”


Key Facts:
  •  
  • New national polling, commissioned by the Climate Council, shows:
  •  
  • - More than two thirds of all voters (68%) support including the consideration of climate change and the potential impact of carbon pollution from new projects in a new national environment law.
  •  
  • - 73% of Australians agree that our national environment law should be designed to protect from the impacts of climate change. This surges to 83% amongst Labor voters.
  •  
  • - 73% of voters agree that updating the law to address climate change is something the Federal Government is expected to do. This includes 86% of Labor voters and 63% of Coalition voters.
  •  
  • - 74% of Australians agree that the law should be updated to help get much-needed new clean energy projects up and running.
  •  
  • - 71% of voters agree that assessing the potential impact of carbon pollution from new projects should be a standard part of environmental approval processes.

About us:

 

The Climate Council is Australia’s leading community-funded climate change communications organisation. We provide authoritative, expert and evidence-based advice on climate change to journalists, policymakers, and the wider Australian community.

 

For further information, go to: climatecouncil.org.au

Or follow us on social media: facebook.com/climatecouncil and twitter.com/climatecouncil


Contact details:

For Climate Council interviews please contact George Hyde on 0431 330 919 or george.hyde@climatecouncil.org.au. For Australian Conservation Foundation interviews contact Josh Meadows on 0439 342 992 or Josh.Meadows@acf.org.au.

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