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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 8 Hansard (16 August) . . Page.. 3049 ..


Implementing the royal commission recommendations is a priority of this government. Child abuse is unacceptable. It represents an appalling failure to keep those who are most vulnerable safe. We are committed to ensuring children's safety and to providing justice and redress for people who have experienced abuse. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Hanson) adjourned to the next sitting.

Climate Change and Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Principal Target) Amendment Bill 2018

Mr Rattenbury, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong—Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability, Minister for Justice, Consumer Affairs and Road Safety, Minister for Corrections and Minister for Mental Health) (11.03): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

I am pleased to present the Climate Change and Greenhouse Gas Reduction (Principal Target) Amendment Bill 2018 to the Legislative Assembly. Climate change is one of the great challenges facing the world today. Its impacts are already being felt here in the ACT, and those impacts will increase over time, whether it be more bushfires, more heatwaves or more extreme storms, with an associated risk of greater flooding.

To commend the Legislative Assembly, the ACT has long been a leading jurisdiction in tackling climate change. We immediately brought forward our target for achieving net zero emissions to 2050 after the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties, COP21, was held in Paris, with other states and territories following our lead. For example, Victoria and New South Wales updated their targets after we did.

We also compare favourably at the international level. Many countries have not set a net zero emissions reduction target, including our own commonwealth government. Currently, the UK aims for an 80 per cent reduction by 2050, although carbon neutrality by 2050 is being considered. Germany aims for up to a 95 per cent reduction target by 2050, and New Zealand is only now setting a net zero emissions target of 2050.

But the world is moving even further forward. For example, Sweden has set a target for reaching net zero emissions by 2045, albeit with the use of offsets. Iceland is going even further, having announced plans for carbon neutrality by 2040. And at the state level, Hawaii has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2045. There is a global push for reaching net zero emissions as soon as possible. We are a part of that global push, but there is clearly scope to do more if we are to remain a world-leading jurisdiction.


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