Page 260 - Week 01 - Thursday, 10 February 2022

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28 per cent reduction target is a far cry from the decarbonisation that is needed. This weak target puts us on a trajectory for runaway climate change, with dangerous consequences for our communities, economy and ecosystems. Their misinformation and irrational attacks on emerging sectors such as electric vehicles in recent years are destructive and hard to fathom. There is no way to describe the Australian government’s response to climate change other than reckless, irresponsible and unforgivable. Knowing that the federal government is, at best, disinterested in climate action, we have done all we can despite their absence.

At this point, I am tired of having to take this approach. The message from COP26 was unequivocal. The situation is dire and urgent, and the laws of planetary physics do not recognise political expediency or well-meaning compromise or upbeat announcements. Like viruses, as we have all learned over the past two years, they just do what they want to do.

The Greens are still, after all this time, after 26 years of international climate conferences, the only party with a strong policy platform on climate change that would deliver the extent of transformation that we all know is needed. And the longer we delay this action, the more damaging and costly the impacts of climate change will be. We cannot afford these delays.

Here in the ACT, thanks to voters embracing our vision, we have been able to put much of this Greens platform into practice. I do want to recognise ACT Labor’s willingness to raise their own level of ambition as part of our partnership. But a few months from now, if the coalition manage to trick and bribe their way back into government or if Labor wins but continues to cave in to the influence of its biggest donors and just tinkers around the edges of meaningful climate action, we face an uncertain future.

How do we, as a government, plan to prepare our jurisdiction of 400,000-odd people to weather the collapse of human civilisation as we know it sometime in the next 40 or 50 years? That is what is at stake. This is not hyperbole. This is not doom-mongering only for political ends. This is the future that the scientists tell us we are looking at if we continue to burn fossil fuels and resist the fundamental changes we need to make.

In conclusion, I would like to thank my fellow members for their support for the ACT’s bold climate action agenda. Our work here provides an important example of what can be achieved through commitment, leadership and collaboration. This work gives much-needed hope to many around the world as we face the climate emergency. I look forward to continuing this work over the coming year as we work together to shape a better future.

Human rights—environment

MS CLAY (Ginninderra) (3.12): I move:

That this Assembly:

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