WA’s peak conservation group and the Clean State campaign welcomes the release of the new 'Climate Change in Western Australia' issues paper by the McGowan government today as the consultation period for the state's climate policy opens. The consultation paper shows that the McGowan Government needs help to come to terms with the reality of climate change, and the opportunities that action on climate present for WA.
CCWA Director Piers Verstegen said "the most important test of any climate policy is whether it takes the science seriously and delivers emissions reduction to protect WA families and communities from the impacts of climate change now.
“WA is the only state with rising pollution and this issues paper indicates that the McGowan Government thinks it is acceptable for our pollution to keep rising.
“It is outrageous that an official government issues paper would suggest that it is OK for pollution to rise, in breach of the Paris Agreement and against every credible scientific analysis on climate change.
“In order to have a meaningful discussion about climate change and build consensus for action, the community need to be informed about the risks of rising pollution and have a clear understanding of the benefits that climate action could bring. Unfortunately, this paper does not deliver this critical information.
“The reality is that strong climate action in WA would see huge economic benefits as has been seen around the world, but our state is currently being held back by the big polluters in the LNG industry who are driving up pollution and holding our government and community back.
“It is not the responsibility of the people of WA to deal with the costs and impacts of rising pollution from giant LNG companies who are clearly dictating climate policy to the McGowan Government.
“We are disappointed that this issues paper does not give a clear indication of what needs to be done about climate change in WA and what the costs of inaction are for our state.
“In the absence of information on this issue from our government, over the coming weeks we will be releasing information to the community to inform a genuine discussion about climate change, its impacts, and the opportunities that climate action presents for WA.
“Once again it is clear that community organisations will have to take the lead on this issue."