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Technology will take us to net zero, promises PM

The federal government has released Australia’s Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan, which it says will achieve net zero by 2050.

A joint media release from Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor says that Australia will act in a “practical, responsible way” to deliver net zero emissions by 2050 while preserving jobs and generating new opportunities for industries and regional areas.

In line with previous policy statements, the government has centred the plan on investment in technology, with an emphasis on clean hydrogen, carbon capture, and energy storage. The media release also highlighted the potential of ultra-low-cost solar.

Disappointingly for professionals working in the built environment, the plan makes scant mention of improving energy efficiency, and makes no reference at all to the opportunities for reducing emissions within buildings. This is despite buildings accounting for more than 50 per cent of electricity use in Australia and almost a quarter of our emissions.

“Australia now has a target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, and we have a clear plan for achieving it,” says Morrison.

“The plan will deliver results through technology, not taxes. It respects people’s choice, and will not force mandates on what people can do or buy. It guarantees that we keep downward pressure on energy prices and secures reliable power. It will ensure Australia continues to serve traditional markets, while taking advantage of new economic opportunities.”

Minister Taylor has emphasised that the plan “will not shut down coal or gas production”.

“Our plan is built on a set of key principles; the most important being technology, not taxes,” says Taylor. “We won’t introduce a carbon tax that drives Australian jobs overseas and punishes the most vulnerable in our community through higher prices for electricity and other essentials.”

To read Australia’s Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan, click here.

Image: From The Plan to Deliver Net Zero The Australian Way

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