Federal Government Must End Its ‘Climate Wars’, NSW Energy Minister Says

The GuardianAustralian Associated Press

Don Harwin urges Coalition to ‘put science, economics and engineering ahead of ideology’
NSW energy minister Don Harwin says the Morrison government is out of touch on climate and energy policy. Photograph: Dan Himbrechts/AAP 
The New South Wales energy minister, Don Harwin, wants the federal government to end its “climate wars” and start reducing emissions, ahead of a meeting with his colleagues from across Australia.
But the Victorian energy minister, Lily D’Ambrosio, says the federal coalition is “beyond hope” on the issue and that NSW is calling them out too late.
In an opinion piece published in the Australian Financial Review, Harwin suggested the federal Liberal-National coalition is out of touch on energy and climate policy.
“We recognise that climate change is a scientific fact,” Hawin wrote in the piece published on Wednesday.
“It is the responsibility of all governments to address greenhouse gas emissions into the future.
“We need to end the “climate wars” and put science, economics and engineering ahead of ideology.”

Australia's climate wars: a decade of dithering

He will come face-to-face with the federal energy minister, Angus Taylor, and his counterparts from most other states and territories at a Council of Australian Governments meeting on Wednesday.
Taylor is hoping to secure agreement at the Adelaide gathering on a policy aimed at improving the reliability of the energy grid by encouraging investment in new generation.
“I look forward to working with my Coag energy council colleagues to bring power prices down while ensuring the reliability of the grid,” Taylor said.
But Harwin stressed that such energy policies should be matched with efforts to grapple with climate change.
“The NSW government has consistently made it clear that we believe that there should be an integration of climate and energy policy,” he said.
The Liberal-National NSW government announced a target in 2016 to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
Harwin said he will push on Wednesday for the Energy Security Board to provide policy options to ministers to achieve that vision.
D’Ambrosio will not be at the meeting but says she expects the federal government will uphold its poor performance on the issue.
“We could possibly say they’re beyond hope. They have still no plan, still no policy, on energy and climate change,” she told reporters in Melbourne.
The discussion comes after the federal government dumped its flagship energy policy – the National Energy Guarantee – in August.
It was aimed at dealing with energy prices, reliability and emissions, but conservatives in the coalition took issue with its emissions targets, with their distaste contributing to Malcolm Turnbull’s downfall.
Harwin said the government may have abandoned the policy but it must still “confront the facts”.
“The market and industry is looking for certainty on emissions, and policy uncertainty will lead to higher wholesale prices and delayed investment decisions,” he said.


1 comment :

  1. We need renewables and for the government to drop its unforgiveable support of fossil fuels. Just because they exist doesn't mean we have to use them. The owners and shareholders made the wrong choice and their loss is the result of a gamble that didn't pay off.


Lethal Heating is a citizens' initiative