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Australia joins global Climate Club: Time to match commitments with action

Australia joins global Climate Club: Time to match commitments with action

The Climate Council has welcomed prime minister Anthony Albanese’s announcement that Australia will join the Climate Club, an international initiative focused on industrial decarbonisation and pursuing net zero emissions.

Climate Council director of research, Dr Simon Bradshaw, said: “Joining the Climate Club is a good move, but must be backed by stronger steps at home to phase out fossil fuels and build the clean industries of the future.

“International collaboration is key to achieving the emissions reductions we need to combat the climate crisis. But we need to see any new international partnerships backed with real action.”

The Climate Club was formed last year by German chancellor Olaf Scholz. Other members include G7 countries – Germany, France, Italy, Canada, United Kingdom, Japan, United States, European Union Council and Commission, as well as Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Indonesia, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

“The fact is Australia’s emissions reduction target remains weaker than Europe’s, the US, and other members of the Climate Club. We will now rightly see even more international pressure on Australia to up our game.

“The Climate Club aims to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. However, this is far too slow – we really should be aiming to achieve net zero by 2035.”

Climate Councillor and economist Nicki Hutley said: “It’s very much in Australia’s economic interests to join this club, to support and enhance the decarbonisation of our industries, to encourage other countries to do the same, and to keep 1.5 alive.”

Ms Hutley said Australia’s joining the Climate Club is symbolic of our reputational shift from a climate outlier and laggard to one that is now being welcomed back into the fold.

“Previously, at COP meetings, Australia was almost considered an outcast. Now, we’re welcomed by other nations. Despite making progress, we can and should accelerate our emissions reduction efforts, given our vast natural and financial resources.

“We mustn’t rest on our laurels, but we are certainly being welcomed into the international fold more than we have been for a long time.”

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