Media Releases | 27th Mar, 2012

Polluters the big winners in Baillieu’s Climate Change Act backflip

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Scrapping target a broken promise that will send clean energy investment and jobs interstate

Environment Victoria has described as “deeply disappointing” the Baillieu Government’s decision to break its pre-election promise and scrap the state’s legislated greenhouse pollution reduction target.

Environment Victoria CEO Kelly O’Shanassy said today,

“Victoria’s greenhouse pollution reduction target was about cleaning up our polluting economy and positioning the state to attract clean energy investment and jobs. Instead the Baillieu Government is doing its best to destroy our clean energy industries who may see this as a signal to invest interstate or overseas.”

“State governments make decisions about whether to approve new coal-fired power stations or new wind farms. They decide whether to fund new freeways or more public transport. It is critical that state governments have a target to guide their decision making.”

“With today’s decision the Baillieu Government has shown that either they don’t understand the threat climate change presents, or they are ignoring it. Either way it’s an irresponsible decision environmentally and economically.”

Ms O’Shanassy said that Environment Victoria recently analysed submissions to the Climate Change Act Review and found that just 9 of 367 submissions supported dumping the pollution reduction target – in most cases these were polluting companies with a vested interest.

“Premier Baillieu has caved in to the demands of a handful of polluters instead of acting to protect the environment and the public interest.”

Ms O’Shanassy concluded, “Premier Baillieu cannot credibly say we don’t need a pollution reduction target because we have a carbon price while at the same time his federal counterpart Tony Abbott is promising to tear up carbon price legislation. The Coalition is in complete disarray on climate change and is not being honest with Victorians or Australians.”


For further information or comment:

Environment Victoria CEO Kelly O’Shanassy – 0421 054 402

After analysing the Climate Change Act review later today Environment Victoria will be issuing a detailed further assessment.

Important reminder:

The Coalition clearly committed to the 20 per cent target ahead of the 2010 election. In November 2010 Coalition Shadow Environment and Climate Change Minister Mary Wooldridge wrote, “We will develop a comprehensive strategy and investment package for engaging Victorians in sustainability, climate mitigation and adaptation programs as a part of meeting our accepted emission reduction target of 20 percent on 2000 levels by 2020.” And, “The Coalition is committed to taking action on climate change.”