Submission: Climate Change Bill 2022 and the Climate Change (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2022

NSWCCL recently made a submission to the Environment and Communications Legislation Committee regarding the Climate Change Bill 2022 and the Climate Change (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2022.

After a decade of inaction on climate change, the Climate Change Bill 2022 (Bill) represents welcome
progress. While we support the Bill as an improvement on business as usual, it is our view that:

  • the target it enshrines in law is woefully inadequate; and
  • beyond setting a target, the Bill fails to do any work towards achieving that target.

This said, through a few amendments the Bill has potential to provide a proper bedrock for Australia’s
ability to respond to the climate emergency and contribute towards the goals of the Paris Agreement.

  1. In light of the scientific evidence that 2°C of warming poses untenable risks, the Bill should remove clause 3(a)(i) enshrining 2°C of warming as a target.
  2. The set out target of a 43% reduction in net greenhouse gases by 2030 is not consistent with the goal of holding the increase in the global average temperature to below 2°C. The Climate Council advises that to keep global temperatures below 1.5°C Australia must reduce emissions to 75 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.
  3. The Bill should require the Australian government to prepare policies that have a reasonable chance of
    meeting the target.
  4. The Premier and the Minister must ensure that the State achieves the long-term emissions reduction
  5. Government decisions with the potential to impact upon Australia’s emissions should be required to be
    consistent with achieving the target.

For more information, read the full submission