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Groom's Climate Action 21 "Plan" A Tragic Farce

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Thursday, 1 June 2017

Tags: Carbon Storage, Forests, Environment, Climate Change

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens' Leader and Climate Change spokesperson

Three years after taking office and abolishing the climate portfolio as well as the independent Climate Action Council, the Hodgman Government has released a woefully weak climate inaction plan.

The centrepiece of this plan is a meaningless, unlegislated 'aspirational' 2050 emissions' reduction target and a commitment to 'undertake a report' that 'assesses approaches' to an electric vehicle charging rollout.

No wonder Matthew Groom let this stinker of a plan sit on his desk for months.

Nothing in this 'plan' to protect forest carbon, in fact, the Liberals have made it clear they want to log carbon rich forests and they support the burning of native forests for energy.

Nothing in the 'plan' to make Tasmanian homes and businesses more energy efficient other than a fraudulently represented TEELS scheme which is not as the 'plan' states 'no-interest' but a Westpac credit card scheme which will hit participants with high interest rates after three years.

Nothing in this 'plan' will deliver meaningful emissions' reductions and too little will equip Tasmanians with the tools we need to adapt to extreme weather events and a rapidly changing climate.

When you read the detail of the Climate Action 21 plan, it is depressingly obvious that the Liberals are packaging up existing programs - like Hydro's regular maintenance upgrades and existing irrigation schemes - to pretend they are investing in climate action.

It is pathetic, but worse than that, it's tragic for our children and grandchildren that the Hodgman Liberal government places so little importance on genuine climate action.

In government, the Greens delivered the Climate Smart 2020 plan in cooperation with all government agencies, industry and small business, scientists, environment groups and the broader community. 

It was acknowledged nationally as the most comprehensive climate mitigation and adaptation plan produced by any Australian state or territory government to date, yet the Liberals threw out all that collaborative work and erased all mention of Climate Smart 2020 from government websites.

We also brought down Tasmania's emissions through the roll out of 9500 free energy efficiency upgrades to Tasmanian households, small business and community organisations.

Real action on climate means keeping the carbon that's in our forests in our forests, and sequestering more carbon into the landscape.  It means funding real programs that reduce emissions and help our communities adapt to the changes ahead.

The Liberals just cannot be taken seriously on this, the biggest challenge and existential threat humanity has faced.  As the imperative to act becomes more urgent, they continue to let Tasmania and its people down.