Labor are claiming a strong and dynamic shift in climate change policy for Australia but the real question is are they doing enough? The proposal to support fracking in the Northern Territory is highlighting the risk of voting for Labor over the Greens in a seat like Richmond where there is a real chance of The Greens winning the seat.
Pushing his point home Greens candidate for Richmond and Deputy Mayor of Byron Shire Michael Lyon is calling on Justine Elliot to condemn Labor’s plan to open up the Northern Territory’s gas supplies to fracking.
‘Labor is running on a platform of climate action, but opening up gas supplies in the Northern Territory completely undermines their modest goal of reducing emissions by 45 per cent by 2030. It would dwarf the impact of the Adani mine on the climate,’ said Mr Lyon.
‘This is such a catastrophic failure from the Labor Party. At a time when we need to be doing everything we can to take action on climate change [Labor] announcing more gas exploration is mind-boggling.
‘The McArthur gas extraction could contribute more than six per cent of our total emissions, and produce emissions that last 50 to 60 per cent longer in our atmosphere than coal.
‘The people of the Northern Rivers have overwhelmingly rejected coal-seam gas, rejected the Adani mine and want to see Australia fulfil its obligations under the Paris agreement. Justine Elliot and Labor fails to represent us on all three of these fronts.’
Elliot unclear on fracking
Ms Elliot has come out in strong personal opposition to the Adani mine but has not taken the same position on fracking. While she and Labor’s Janelle Saffin worked together to fight against fracking in the Northern Rivers she will not be drawn on her position regarding fracking in the Northern Territory. Instead she has chosen to highlight that Labor is a better option than the Liberal National Party (LNP).
‘This election is a clear choice between Labor’s plan for real action on climate change, and the Liberals and Nationals disgraceful record of inaction, rising pollution and climate change denial,’ she told Echonetdaily.
‘Labor has announced the most comprehensive climate change policy that any governing party has taken to an election in Australia’s history, including specific policies to cut pollution in different sectors of the economy.
‘This policy is based on our pollution reduction targets: to deliver a 45 per cent cut to our national carbon pollution (on 2005 levels) by 2030; and net zero emissions by 2050. This is based on the advice from the Climate Change Authority on Australia’s fair share contribution to meet the goals of Paris to keep warming well below two degrees.’