The Conservation Council of WA (CCWA) and the Clean State project have commissioned one of the world’s leading independent climate research institutions to produce the first carbon budget for Western Australia that is compliant with the Paris Agreement goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees temperature rise.
The analysis, by Berlin-based Climate Analytics, will be provided as input to into the McGowan Government’s climate change issues discussion paper. It provides emissions reduction pathways and carbon reduction targets for each sector and the whole WA economy.
CCWA Director Piers Verstegen said the analysis was the first of its kind in WA and provided a roadmap for how Western Australia could comply with the Paris Agreement and meet the McGowan Government’s 2050 emissions reduction targets.
“This analysis shows how each sector of the WA economy can reduce pollution to net-zero by 2050 while staying within a carbon budget that is consistent with limiting warming to 1.5 degrees.
“At present, WA is the only state in Australia with rapidly rising emissions, breaching Australia’s international obligations due to growth in the LNG industry, however, the McGowan Government has announced an ‘aspirational’ target of net zero emissions by 2050.
“The research we have commissioned from the team at Climate Analytics shows how it is possible to reach that target with a mix of technology and other action to reduce pollution across every sector in our state.
“The carbon budget makes clear is that if one sector (such as LNG) is allowed to continue polluting at current levels or even grow its pollution, then other sectors have less carbon budget available and have to bear the cost of much deeper and faster cuts than they would otherwise have to make.
“When LNG companies like Chevron and Woodside say they should be allowed to keep polluting without limits then they are asking to take more than their fair share of the carbon budget. These companies then must answer the question - which other sectors do they suggest should cut deeper and faster to make up for their pollution?
“The budget sets out interim targets for emissions reduction and supports scientist’s recent call for new legislation to ensure that those targets are being met and reported against.
The analysis shows that at current pollution rates, the carbon budget would be entirely used up within 12 years, however, action to cut pollution now can deliver a range of very significant benefits and economic opportunities for the State, including thousands of new jobs in clean industries.
“This is the sort of analysis that should be commissioned by the McGowan Government but they clearly need some assistance with climate policy so we decided to commission this important work ourselves.
“We are making this carbon budget free for anyone to use, to help all stakeholders understand how Western Australia’s pollution must be reduced, in each sector, and overall.
It will provide an important evidence-based foundation to ensure that policy, investment and other decisions are in line with our international obligations on climate change.
Download the Climate Analytics media release
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