Oxfam has welcomed reports of the Australian Government’s plan to announce it will cancel the Kyoto credits ahead of next week’s UN Climate Ambition Summit and called for a commitment to net-zero targets by 2050 or sooner.
Oxfam Chief Executive Lyn Morgain said the announcement was a long time coming.
“The Kyoto carryover credits were never a legitimate way for Australia to achieve the 2030 emissions reduction commitments we made in Paris. Cancelling them is the right thing to do. But this must only be the first step in raising Australia’s ambition and commitment to tackling the climate crisis.”
The reports of the government’s announcement follow an open letter published in the Sydney Morning Herald this week, signed by high profile Pacific political and religious figures. They called for the Federal Government to double Australia’s current Nationally Determined Contribution, cancel the controversial Kyoto credits and commit to net zero emissions by 2050.
“Australia has just experienced the hottest November on record and Pacific Island leaders have published an open letter calling on the Australian Government to take serious action on climate change to avoid the certain devastation of their communities, lands and cultures,” Ms Morgain said.
“In the face of accelerating climate change, Australia can and must stand with our Pacific neighbours by matching our ambition to the scale of the threat these communities face. We must commit to net-zero emissions by 2050, boost investment in renewable energy and provide additional funds for climate mitigation across our region.”
A YouGov poll conducted in September showed strong public support for Australia to take action to cut emissions and phase out fossil fuels by 2030 to help protect Pacific nations from the impacts of climate change. The survey found more than two thirds of voters (68%) agreed this was a good enough reason for Australia to act on climate change.
“The Australian people know it’s time for us to do better, they know it’s time for our leaders to show they care about our Pacific family by stepping up, and by steering us away from fossil fuels and towards renewables,” Ms Morgain said.