Media Releases | 11th Feb, 2016

Green light for strong Victorian plan to reduce greenhouse pollution

An independent, expert review of the Victorian Climate Change Act released this morning paves the way for the state government to adopt a nation-leading agenda to reduce greenhouse pollution and prepare for the impacts of climate change, Environment Victoria said today.

The Review of the Climate Change Act was tabled in Parliament today following community consultation.

Environment Victoria CEO Mark Wakeham said today:

“This review is a landmark report which builds a strong case for Victorian leadership to reduce emissions in the state’s interest. Now current and future Victorian governments have the green light and a clear agenda for moving swiftly to cut carbon pollution to zero in all sectors of our economy, and to prepare for the impacts of climate change.”

“Climate change is already harming Victorian communities, businesses and our environment. We’re already seeing increased risk of bushfires and more frequent droughts, and the Victorian government now must get on with the job of implementing the findings of this report.”

Environment Victoria welcomes key recommendations on:

  • Setting short-term and long-term emissions reduction targets
  • Creating a Climate Change Charter in Victoria’s Climate Change Act
  • Strengthening the legislative framework to ensure that climate change is a key consideration in decisions right across government
  • Increasing the powers of the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to regulate for emissions reduction
  • Quantifying the impact of climate change on the Victorian economy
  • Developing a comprehensive climate change strategy every five years.

“How the Andrews Government responds to this important review will be a key test of their leadership. We need swift development of the state’s strategy on climate change, and in the meantime actions that reduce Victoria’s greenhouse pollution must be funded in the upcoming state budget in May.

“The soon-to-be-released Renewable Energy Action Plan is a key opportunity to ensure Victoria starts cleaning up our energy supply, which is responsible for half of our carbon pollution. An ambitious plan will create thousands of jobs across the state and kickstart new regional clean energy projects. Equally important will be that the Plan facilitates the orderly closure of our oldest and dirtiest power stations like Hazelwood and Yallourn, and invests in a transition plan for the Latrobe Valley.”

“The Climate Change Act review will also be a key test for the Victorian Opposition on whether they are prepared to support this independent and highly credible report from experts or simply default to their previous position of opposing any action on climate change. We hope Matthew Guy and his party room accept the review and use it to inform a credible Coalition policy on climate change, which has been sadly lacking.”

For interview and further comment:

Mark Wakeham, Environment Victoria CEO,
Office: (03) 9341 8127, Mobile: 0439 700 501