Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Labor's 2019 Climate Policy

By AusSMC

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has unveiled Labor's climate change policy — the plan it will use to reach its target of cutting emissions by 45% by 2030, and ensure half of Australia's energy comes from renewable sources by 2050.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

"Labor’s push for electric cars is great so long as they’ll be run on renewable energy, not fossil fuels. Otherwise, what’s the point? Coal, in particular, is the dirtiest of all fuels in terms of carbon emissions -- and almost 60 percent of Australia’s electricity currently comes from burning coal. And to be clear, there’s no such thing as ‘clean coal’—it’s a total oxymoron. Every time an Australian politician advocates ‘clean coal’, a giant fist should come flying out of the blue and knock them straight off our TV screens."

Professor William Laurance is director of the Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Sciences (TESS) at James Cook University.


"If this is done with a fleet that is predominantly battery operated, such fleet needs to obtain its energy (power) from the mains electrical grid. If the power generated in the main grid is from non-renewable sources such as coal overall GHG emissions will be larger than for a new technology diesel or petrol vehicle. In addition the emissions that would come from the tailpipe of diesel/petrol vehicles are just displaced to a power plant in the case of electric vehicles. Only if we significantly increase the contribution of renewable low to zero emission power sources to our electricity generation will the electric vehicles come to its full potential.

Taking into...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.