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Gutwein's Net Zero Greenwash

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Tags: Carbon Storage, Climate Change, Forests, Tasmanian Forest Agreement

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Safe Climate spokesperson 

Today’s announcement from the Premier on net zero carbon emissions is greenwash, not “nation-leading” climate action. It’s certainly not the leadership we need in a climate emergency. 

A target of net zero carbon emissions in 2030 might be nation-leading if we hadn’t achieved it six years ago. 

Announcing a target of net zero nine years ahead, when we already reached it in 2015, is not future-focused, responsible governing – and it’s not honest. It’s a cynical, tricky attempt to con Tasmanians into thinking the government is taking strong action. 

The reason we’ve achieved net zero in was thanks to the Tasmanian Forests Agreement, negotiated under a Labor Green Government. The TFA reserved vast native forest carbon stores, that have been offsetting the growing emissions from key industries. 

Not only did the Liberals vote against protecting the 356,000 ha of future reserve forests in 2013, since coming to government they’ve accelerated native forest logging.  They have been ramping up the clearfelling and burning of native forests - the very carbon banks that have helped us reach net zero.

The Liberals’ proposal has no legislated sectoral targets despite emissions across all sectors increasing, just “plans”. Plans aren’t binding, laws are. We don’t have time for softly, softly when it comes to tackling the most urgent threat facing humanity.

The Premier’s announcement today was spin and greenwash. To show real climate leadership, he needs to commit to ending native forest logging, and to introducing legislated sectoral targets by 2030.