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Current Affairs

Australia’s 2050 net zero emission target

Date: 28 October 2021 Tags: Climate Change

Issue

Australia has announced that it is planning to achieve net zero emissions by the year 2050. The announcement comes days before the climate change conference (COP26) at Glasgow.

 

Background

Australia is relatively late when it comes to announcement of net zero emissions among developed economies of the world.

 

Details

  • Declaration of net zero emission has been done earlier by countries such as US and UK. US will halve its emissions by 2030 and UK will source all of its electricity from renewable sources by the year 2035.

  • Encouraging countries to come forward with “ambitious” emissions reduction targets by 2030 is one of the major agendas for COP26.

  • For taking climate change related action, decade leading to 2030 is very important. It will help in reaching a net zero situations by 2050.

  • Keeping temperatures to below 2 degrees Celsius, preferably to under 1.5 degrees Celsius is one of the goals made under 2015 Paris Agreement.

 

Net zero

A method of achieving a balance between the greenhouse gases that are produced and the greenhouse gases that are taken out of the atmosphere. It will focus on consuming only as much energy as is produced. 

 

Australia’s targets

  • It has been named “Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan”. It will focus on reducing cost of low emissions technology.

  • The technology employed includes clean hydrogen, low cost solar, energy storage and low emissions steel and aluminum. The goal is to decarbonise the world’s economy.

 

Benefits

  • It will help Australia to reduce emissions by up to 35 per cent by 2030. The plan is expected to deliver more than 100,000 jobs by 2050.

  • Exports from Australia are expected to more than triple between 2020 and 2050. Household electricity bills will be lower than today.

 

Criticisms

  • The plan has been criticized as “incomplete” and a “scam”. There is no clear plan on balancing coal industry and reaching net zero by 2050.

  • Critics also say that climate policies and commitments are not Paris Agreement Compatible. The policy will succeed if all other countries followed a similar level.