1 June 2022 - Zali Steggall issues a statement congratulating the Ministers of the new Government on their appointment and welcomes the increased number of women in Cabinet.
Congratulations to all the Ministers and Assistant Ministers in the Albanese Government on their appointments. I particularly welcome the increased number of women appointed.
I welcome the appointment of Chris Bowen as Minister for Climate Change and Energy with Assistant Minister Jenny McAllister, and Tanya Plibersek as Minister for the Environment and Water and look forward to working with them constructively to see much needed progress in these areas.
Importantly, elevating climate change to the Cabinet rather than just emissions reduction is an important step towards focussing attention on all aspects of the challenge, from mitigation with emissions reduction to national risk assessments, resilience building and adaptation planning.
Their appointments come at a crucial juncture. Our communities are facing increased risks from changing and exacerbated weather events, biodiversity is under unprecedented threat, animals are becoming extinct and all aspects of our way of life and economy are being impacted by global warming.
This is an important moment to reset after the last decade of inaction on these fronts. The challenges are large, the EPBC Act must be reformed with the Samuels recommendations implemented in full, a federal Environment Protection Authority must be established, and our carbon emissions must be halved or more this decade.
Labor has taken a positive agenda on these issues to the election, but their ambitions must be increased to meet the challenges we face.
It is also more important than ever to legislate Australia’s long-term commitment to Net Zero and to provide a clear roadmap to deliver a sustainable transition to net zero and accountability. The Climate Change Bill provides a proven legislated framework to achieve this, has been subject of inquiry and lengthy consultation and is supported by business, industry, civic society and unions. I will be urging the Government to either adopt it or its key features.
I look forward to working constructively with the incoming ministers on these goals and many others in the incoming parliament. It is so important that we see progress for our communities and the nation as a whole.
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