Statement on postponement of COP26 UN Climate Change Conference

2 April, 2020

Statement from Zali Steggall MP:

The postponement of Glasgow COP 26 today is a timely reminder of the other significant global emergency that the world faces in the immediate future: a world that is more than two degrees warmer. We are seeing the impact on our economy of global events, the dire social and economic consequences when governments ignore warnings from science and health experts.

The Morrison Government now has a responsibility to rebuild the economy in an intelligent and future focused manner. We must learn from the experiences of this crisis and the disastrous impacts of the bushfires this past summer and prepare ourselves for the future. We must rebuild in a sustainable way, one that demonstrates we are listening to the experts and the scientists, limits our emissions and embraces new green technologies. Experts, such as ClimateWorks Australia in their upcoming Decarbonisation Futures report, are telling us that we already have many of the solutions and the technology to make a significant difference.

I urge the Government and the National COVID-19 Coordination Commission to consider the words of the David Thodey, Commission’s Deputy Chair a “do nothing Australia… does not look pretty” when it comes to climate change. Consider this in your decisions and strategy and let us get the economy back on track in a way that emits less, sequesters more, is more sustainable and embraces low carbon innovation.

As businesses are put into “hibernation” to wait out the COVID-19 pandemic, we must have an eye to the future when we emerge and ask: do we want everything we had before to remain the same or is this an opportunity to adapt and mitigate our emissions?