Environment Victoria has strongly welcomed the Brumby Government’s Climate Change White Paper released today, saying that the new greenhouse targets and policy package positioned Victoria as the leading state on climate change nationally.
The White Paper includes a target to reduce Victoria’s greenhouse pollution by 20 percent by 2020 (on 2000 levels) and new measures to increase the energy efficiency of older Victorian houses and retire 400 MW of brown coal-fired power generation.
Environment Victoria’s CEO Ms Kelly O’Shanassy said:
“Victoria’s new target is a strong leadership move that is head and shoulders above any other state or national emissions reduction target in Australia. It is in stark contrast to the weak targets and lack of policy from both the Federal ALP and Coalition.”
“We are very pleased that the target is unconditional meaning that the Victorian government is committed to meeting the target with or without a price on carbon pollution.”
“While the science tells us we need to go further than a 20 percent reduction in emissions by 2020, the Premier is building a bridge between what we are currently doing about climate change in Australia and what we need to be doing.”
On plans to reduce emissions from coal-fired power by up to 4 million tonnes annually by 2014 Ms O’Shanassy said:
“It is encouraging to see that the State Government acknowledges the need to replace coal-fired power generation, however to achieve the target of 20 percent by 2020 we think it will be essential to replace the whole of Hazelwood with clean energy.
“A 20 percent reduction means cutting Victoria’s greenhouse pollution by 30 million tonnes over the next decade. Replacing Hazelwood could reduce the state’s emissions by 14 million tonnes as soon as the end of 2012, so we’ll be continuing to campaign for that ahead of the state election.”
On plans to improve Victoria’s existing housing stock to a 5 star standard by 2020 Ms O’Shanassy said: “Victoria’s current housing stock averages just 2 stars, so this is a very significant move that will both reduce emissions and improve the comfort of Victoria homes. We’d like to see the Government give priority to low income households who often struggle with high energy bills.”
For interview contact
Kelly O’Shanassy, Environment Victoria 0421 054 402
Media assistance contact
Louise Matthiesson 0417 017 844