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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 11 November 2021) . . Page.. 3338 ..


also noting that they are the highest paid and have some of the best conditions in the country. But I am absolutely committed to working with the Australian Education Union, our teaching professionals and school principals to do better, and we will do better.

Climate change—Net Zero Emissions Policy Forum

MR PETTERSSON: My question is to the Chief Minister and Minister for Climate Action. Chief Minister, can you provide the Assembly with further details about the Net Zero Emissions Policy Forum?

MR BARR: I thank Mr Pettersson for the question. The forum is an historic agreement between the New South Wales, ACT and South Australian governments to collaborate to solve a range of complex technical, economic, and also some very practical policy issues to get us to net zero as quickly and as fairly as possible. New South Wales, ACT and South Australia are founding members, but subnational governments from around Australia, and indeed the world, are encouraged to join the forum. It will provide a forum to share information on best practice emission reduction policies. It will help governments and ministers to connect with each other and to facilitate joint problem-solving through task forces on specific policy topics.

Co-founding this forum is a practical step that will lead to real and positive outcomes for the ACT. Subnational governments have demonstrated their commitment to a zero emissions future at COP26 through participation in a number of forums and in signing a number of agreements. The ACT has been a national and world leader in its ambition. By founding the Net Zero Emissions Policy Forum, we hope to carry this momentum forward and use our collective experience to achieve net zero.

MR PETTERSSON: A supplementary. Chief Minister, can you please update the Assembly on the international agreements for cities and subnational governments that the ACT has signed up to through COP26 forums?

MR BARR: In the lead-up to the summit the ACT signed a joint statement on zero emissions transport. We signed the global Coal to Clean Power Transition Statement and the Cities Race to Zero initiative. By signing the declaration to accelerate transition to 100 per cent zero emission vehicles, the ACT—along with countries, governments and car manufacturers—are pledged to work towards all sales of new cars and vans being zero emissions, globally, by 2040.

It is disappointing that at a national level our country did not join with other countries, including Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, to sign the statement. The federal government has no phase-out time line for petrol cars and no intention, it would seem, to introduce incentives to drive zero emission vehicle uptake.

Because of this shortsighted approach, we run the risk of being the world’s dumping ground for the least efficient vehicles. This is why subnational governments have to take the lead. The ACT will continue to work with other Australian states and territories to implement a nation-leading climate action policy that will encourage EV uptake. Locally, this includes providing two years of free registration and zero stamp duty on new zero emission


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