Greens to support Labor’s climate targets

Last month, the Greens threatened to use their numbers in the Senate to block Labor’s 43% 2030 emissions reduction target, Today it confirmed that it will lend its support to the bill:

“While the government has been unwilling to adopt science-based targets and place a moratorium on new coal and gas, we have been able to secure improvements to the bill,” Mr Bandt told the National Press Club.

These included that the 2030 target to reduce emission by 43 per cent over 2005 levels could be ratcheted up but not down, greater accountability mechanisms to ensure the target was being met, and forcing key government agencies to take the target into account when approving projects…

Labor’s legislation to enshrine net zero emissions by 2050 and reduce emissions by 43 per cent over 2005 levels by 2030, is set to pass the lower house this week because the government has the numbers.

But its passage through the Senate when Parliament next sits in early September requires the Greens because it is opposed by the Coalition.

Good news. Get it done.

Unconventional Economist
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  1. Labor and the Greens are pulling the same scam here as they are with the Aboriginal voice to parliament.

    Get people to agree to something that appears an obvious choice:
    Be good to the environment vs be bad to the environment / be good to Aboriginals vs be bad to Aboriginals

    Who wouldn’t choose to do the right thing eh?
    The issue is that people if fully informed of the DETAIL about what will be involved or put forward to fulfilling those goals, will not agree, as it will be extremely harmful and against the interests and wishes of most.

    One just has to dig a little further.. If Australia’s population is to rise 10% thanks to turbo charging migration, a 43% net cut, is really approaching a 50% per capita cut. And from every emissions source we have.

    So, cutting 50% from LIVESTOCK sources. Now a different feed mixture (more expensive) might reduce herd flatulence by 10%, but where does the other 40% cut from? A 40% cut in the number of herd allowed to be stocked.. which equals massively reduced meat supply, massively reduced export earnings, massively increased meat prices at the supermarket.
    Would Australians agree? No. But will they have by cheering the 43% target… yes.

    A 43% reduction in transport emissions. How will that be achieved? Hello, massive subsidies to rich people to buy new electric cars, and massive increases in taxes and levies on transportation. Sorry Joe Jane Strugglestreet, YOU will be the one reducing your transport emissions by 90% (no family holiday down the coast, reducing household vehicle ownership to 1), so that the rich can go on with their lifestyle unchanged, subsidised by Joe & Jane Average (& their future descendants) who bear the cost of subsidising the purchases of others via higher taxation and public debt.

    A 43% emissions cut in the face of a rising population, when a great deal of emissions do not have like for like low emission replacements (switching from meat burgers to plant burgers is not like for like) is an extreme task. And it is laughable in the face of running a high migration program.

    It means in the end that rather than letting Australians go unmolested, they must have their lives severely crimped and controlled and burdened, simply to have their land taken away from them, and their self-determination, by filling the land up with developing world to first world migrants, who, by their location change, get to increase their emissions 100 fold.

    You will own nothing, you will have no self-determination, and you will eat the bugs, and we will erase your appreciation of the goodness of your past and history so you can convince yourself to still be ‘happy’. A total fraud and path that is not just, but foolish.

    Pol Pot once offered society a choice, to be ‘equal’ or allow things to remain the same.
    I mean, who would say no to something so obviously good as society being equal right?
    Likewise with a 43% emissions cut, and a ‘voice to parliament’ vote. The devil is in the details, which is specifically why consent is asked for in the absence of them.

    Legislating a goal is a coercive con.
    Keep the goal in mind, and seek consent on the actual policies, one by one, you intend to meet the goal, without using the goal as a coercive and legislative bettering ram to get them through.

    Operating with integrity and honesty, vs manipulation & coercion.
    People joyously celebrate electing their abusers, and the act of people consenting to more abuse. This is the state of a population without an effective & independent media and education system. Stuck in a cultural milieu of guilt, shame, narcissism, subservience, greed, ignorance & virtue signalling without understanding.

    • Display NameMEMBER

      I guess I am the victim of low expectations. LNP spent a decade doing little except siphon cash to donor companies. At least this is a step in the general direction we need to go in.

      • Do you honestly think electing a government that keeps Australia on track to double its population with foreign migrants, is a step in the right environmental direction? You do understand that a doubled local population, still emits net far more GLOBAL emissions (when their consumption is taken account of from local & global sources),(and does more net local environmental damage), even with a 43% LOCAL emissions cut, yes?
        This is the level of ease with which people are deceived and deceive themselves.

        A 43% emissions cut in Australia will see Australian steel mills closed down. But the migrants will still be housed in buildings in part, made from steel, and still buy cars, in part, made by steel, and require new schools and hospitals, in part, made by steel…

        So steel use goes UP! Not down. Net. Globally. Just sourced from China, to build he wealth of China. Not locally. Australia takes the hit on living standards, wealth, and rights, and our local environment. While the global environment loses. That is a lose-lose-lose-lose (win for China’s wealth) scenario. There is no win for the environment, no win for Australia, no win for our people, nor the globe’s.

        The alternate would be not legislating a goal. Keeping Australia’s population on track at a sustainable amount (no more than 26m total for the foreseeable future), and individually legislating reductions in emissions where the best NET impact can be made, with the lowest disruption and loss of wealth, rights and lifestyle. Already just be focussing on that population goal, the benefits run many multiples ahead of Labor’s approach, without the cost and harm.

          • Supporting the “mainstream thing” takes less intellectual effort than any other approach. Well done champ.

            The whole idea of emissions reduction goals or global per capita limits on emissions is entirely scientifically wrongheaded.

            Environmental impact = population size x per capita impact

            Population decisions are made locally, consumption decisions are made locally.

            The goal should be to have every region, sit within the environmental footprint allowed by its region, and trade the difference. This ensures that each region is incentivised to control BOTH aspects of its environmental impact: population & per capita emissions, with a very reasonable basis.. fit within the limits of the environmental space you occupy.

            A global approach, especially one where mass migration is ongoing, allows countries to simply export their problems, with costs born by those that had nothing to do with them being incurred.

            i.e. the Australian citizen must bear the cost of excess births in Africa, and their importation to Australia, to increase their environmental impacts 100 fold.

            It creates perverse incentives whereby one set of people, are to bear the burden for the decisions of all others, with no relation whatsoever to their actual local environmental limits. i.e. with no regard to Australia’s water limits, impact of a higher population on local biodiversity etc.

            Local limits. TRADE the difference. Focus on population and per capita usage. Generate buy in, spread the cost, without forcing the burden on particular parties.

            Where people have to live within LOCAL limits, it is the local environment AND THEIR CHOICES that limit their lifestyle. NOT decisions made from afar, or central authorities.

            Australia should be assessing its own environmental limits, and making decisions to fit within those. i.e. how much carbon does the Australian environment (including our share of surrounding waters))
            abate on an annual basis. this should be the basis for what our emissions should be, NOT arbitrary internationally mediated targets.

            You know, attached to our actual environment, rather than burdened by the decisions of every other person on earth, outside our control.

            The end. Thank you.

          • If we define dribbling as offering nothing of value, or no new insight into a topic, then would that not describe your twin posts here?

            The idea that limiting environmental impacts to local conditions rather than to arbitrary targets & global sensibilities & virtue signalling to feel good, is novel in the current debate, and what I am referring to.

            What environmental stewardship really is, vs, a control mechanism to pick winners and losers, and offset costs onto chosen targets.

          • Cheap insults don’t explain why he is wrong. Personally, I think that the government would simply be thrown out of office at the next election if it tried to make meat unaffordable to the average person, for example, regardless of the legislated 43% target. The major neoliberal parties have been progressively getting a smaller and smaller share of the vote for years. They could kiss majority government goodbye, limiting their attractiveness to their donors. The only way to enforce meatless diets for the masses would be to suspend elections and go to a full-on police state. I think that TheLambKing is correct on this issue. Also, the most effective and least painful methods of reaching 43% could change with time and better technology. So far as population numbers are concerned, the target sets up a conflict between the excessively high immigration demanded by the major parties’ donors (driving up total carbon emissions) and the need to avoid excessive pain to the average voter to stay in office.

          • @Tania, want rebuttal? Search MB for every single climate related article. This has been done over and over again.

            We have a new govt, the decision has been made with an apparent mandate of the people. Time to get over it.

            So sick of all this hand wringing over climate action, something needs to be done, it has been done, it isn’t perfect but it was better than what was happening over the last 10 years. Leroy is 10 years too late and is either doing this on purpose to try and keep everyone in the muck raking or is just and idiot. The insults shall continue, MB commentariat have more important things to argue about like aldi chocolate vs Cadbury chocolate.

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      Don’t worry champ. Labor’s bill is mostly toothless with little accountability or enforcement mechanisms, so we’ll be able to continue doing nothing for the foreseeable future.

    • I'll have anotherMEMBER

      Your reasoning states every industry should find 50% reductions.

      Fact is, getting most people who can to work from home, thereby avoiding commuting will make a massive dent in emissions. Subsidized solar panels and EVs will get the remaining portion done.

      However it is achieved, it is far more economically sustainable than what we do now for the environment.

      • But you are illustrating my point – how these targets are used to hoodwink people.
        “Fact is, getting most people who can to work from home, thereby avoiding commuting will make a massive dent in emissions”

        Total transport emissions in Australia account for roughly 15% of our total emissions. Commuting perhaps 5% of that. So a 50% reducing in commuting is only a 16% reduction in transport emissions, not 43%. (Bear in mind supply of goods to stores, deliveries, tradesmen miles etc are not commuting). And are their social costs to reducing workplace interactions? Increased isolation, loneliness, mental health.. (domestic violence went through the roof during lockdowns.. as did alcoholism etc)

        “Subsidized solar panels and EVs will get the remaining portion done.”
        Again, this deals with a small set of Australia’s emissions only. The 43% target is across the board. A large number of areas do not have adequate environmentally friendly substitutions. This means in some areas that may easily cope with a 43% reduction, they might need to go to 70~80% to make up for lack of possible reductions elsewhere, or simply whole industries may have to be decimated to no reduction in global emissions overall. i.e. local emission intensive industries: manufacturing, value adding to goods, get shifted overseas. Or the burden gets shifted entirely to the lower 40% of the population to eliminate their emissions (as they can no longer afford them). E.g. if farm emissions are forced to be reduced similar to overseas Western provinces under such legislation then the price of meat and fruit (fruit > fertiliser) may massively increase. So the reduction is made, by taking away from a class of people, without fully making them aware of this when getting them to agree to the overarching plan.
        It is an “agree to this wonderful goal” we will go into the details that directly harm YOU, and not others, at a later date… unspoken.

        Think about things. An alternate to making Australia lose out on meat exporting dollars, and to allow poor people to still eat meat, might be to switch out the entirety of Melbourne to Canberra to Sydney air travel, for fast train. That would be just as good for the environment, or better, AND more EQUITABLE, but you know the former, under pursing an overarching 43% emissions reduction goal is far more likely, and the latter virtually no chance at all.

        This is the point about getting people to agree to arbitrary targets for supposedly good reasons.
        It enables abusive policy to take the place of fair policy at a later date.

        I am not saying “don’t have a goal in mind”. I am saying don’t use a goal to enable you to pass policies you otherwise wouldn’t be able to, because otherwise you are not really gaining consent, you are forcing consent. And base it on actual local environmental limits, not arbitrary “feel good” numbers.

        Would you consent to a home building contract on this basis?
        Agree to build the home I build you, however I choose to build it, regardless of what I end up making it cost you, or whatever your level of happiness with the finished product? Madness right? This is what it is to consent to targets, goals and plans lacking detail.

        It is an abuse of governance, not an exemplar of it.

        • Meanwhile, with the enthusiastic support of LNP/Labor and Greens, Australia’s population has grown by 37% (7 million) to 26 million since 2000, and we still have about twice the number of births versus deaths each year, despite having a TFR of less than 2 for 47 years.
          Last time I looked, emissions per person were almost the same today as in 2000. So those capable of basic maths and able to join the dots will have little to be cheerful about.

    • TheLambKingMEMBER

      This really is rambling nonsense.

      Most strategies start with a target/aim/goal – sometimes with no fleshed out details around how you might achieve this goal (we will land a man on the moon, I will lose 20kg by xmas, we will develop a manufacturing industry). You then set some guidelines/themes/boundaries/rules around how you might achieve those goals (we will need a space program.) And then you start to flesh out the details.

      So a 43% target that is legislated then help drive some decisions we could make (should I continue to subsidise fossil fuels, should I allow new fossil fuel sources to be developed, should I remove luxury tax on EVs but increase them for petrol cars.) You look at all carbon sources and start to work on a plan for each industries – with a subsidy to help or a tax to nudge people in the ‘right’ direction. It then allows people to invest (we will have more EVs on the road so I might invest in charging stations.)

      The sky won’t fall in with this target – it will slowly nudge people in the right direction and actually provide some certainty. Most carbon reducing technologies are getting cheaper anyway (EVs, batteries, Solar panels) – EV cars will be cheaper than petrol within the next 5 years, Solar+Wind+Batteries is already the cheapest source of new power.

      • The only reason to LEGISLATE a target is to use it to coerce changes and pass policies that would otherwise not make it.

        When a football team sets a target of winning a premiership, it is not legislated. They still do their best though, but within reasonable limits. If you legislated a team having to win a premiership by a certain year, they might do things they otherwise would not agree to (perhaps over spend on players in a year, beyond their financial means, jeopardising the long-term interests of their members and team). Every time someone objected to driving so hard to win a premiership that year they could be directed to the legislated goal of the club.. win a premiership this year. Being legislated, it is non-negotiable.

        It is a tactic that is both virtue-signalling and playing politics, but also to support coercion. It is an underhanded way to treat the people.

        It allows industries to be selected and targeted by zealots, outside of actual global environmental benefits, and local impacts. Pet projects (like filling Australia with foreigners) can remain unimpacted, with others forced to bear the weight “evil meat eaters”, “nasty steel producers”.

        When farmers may wish to point to the impact on the poor, of reducing their meat production, or the overall benefits of legislating against short hop flights instead of reducing meat consumption they will be tutt tutted with “we all have to do our part” you have to meet the 43% reduction too. When the wealthy 10% are asked to forgo short hop flights, they will not have to though… with (if they are to be reduced at all) that burden falling SOLELY on the bottom 50% of society to forgo them (and take SLOW rail instead or just stay home…) …eat the bugs…

        • A LEGISLATED goal allows the bottom half of society to bear the brunt of environmental polices that they would otherwise not consent too. Logic, sorry we HAVE to, we ALL have to do our part, see the legislated goal WE agreed to.

          Meanwhile the top end of town, are not impacted in any way. A 43% reduction in air miles, comes off the bottom 50%, not the top.
          A 50% reduction in local km travelled, comes off the bottom, not the top.
          A 50% reduction in meat consumption, comes off the bottom, not the top.
          A 50% increase in land costs, negatively affects the bottom not the top.

          It is intended as a coercive tool. Overseas it has unremittingly been used as a coercive tool.
          Alternatives are taking an environmental analysis of Australia (shocking thought!), looking what our net LOCAL environmental limits are, and making policies not based on arbitrary goals, but sticking with real local environmental limits, with a “whole of policy” approach to making sure efforts to stick within limits were equitable.

          An equitable approach would be to favour allowing the bottom end of Australia to retain much of their lifestyles, rather than have them impacted by migration. Or have them reduced with migration reduced, but not reduced in preference to not reducing migration.

          A legislated target is a vehicle to focus on “all” doing their part, regardless of whether it will actually involve an impact on them (the poor.. very much so, the rich, not at all), and blind to what is actually of local and global environmental benefit.

          It sets up moral hazards. i.e. reducing production of X locally, meets our goal.. so good. Regardless of wether it reduces global emissions or actual local consumption of the good in question.. e.g. steel.

          Mass import people into Australia > steel use up. (continue doing this)
          Reduce people imported to Australia > steel use down (don’t do this)
          Reduce steel production in Australia > LOCAL emissions down, yay legislated target met! (do this)

          Net REAL environmental impact > negative
          Net REAL cost to Australian people > negative
          Policy of REAL environmental benefit to Australia and the world > forgone

          • drsmithyMEMBER

            A legislated target or not, makes absolutely no difference to any of this. The wealthy are always going to wear less personal impact. Because that’s what being rich means.

            You are just using incredibly long winded walls of text to say it’s immigration wot dun it.

            Even if immigration stops tomorrow, enormous amounts of emissions reductions need to occur. And a quite substantial fraction of them are entirely independent of population.

            But like I said, this looks like a toothless tiger.

          • @ smith the ‘brown man’ apologist,
            human activities are responsible for almost all of the increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere over the last 150 years.
            so … the sensible thing by a mile is for australia to abandon the mass immigration intakes. it is ruination for us.
            however that is an inconvenient truth for the zealous progressives that lust for a population replacement and the greed obsessed neoliberals that lust for ever more consumption.

        • Oh Totes where art thouMEMBER

          The only reason to LEGISLATE a target is to use it to coerce changes and pass policies that would otherwise not make it.

          Um, isn’t that what we want? To force change and pass policies to bring change about?

          You make some good points about the actual maths of emissions reductions. There are hard choices to be made, and population is going to have to get on the public agenda somehow. However if you want to drive change, you should look at some behavioural science. Being ranted at rarely changes peoples minds. Shorter, sharper comments are more effective. Not essays.

      • Are you sure the ‘getting cheaper’ argument stands up without massive Chinese manufacturing?

    • The rambling was too much for me but what I will say is the human body doesn’t need meat – it just does not

      Doesn’t matter if you’re rich or poor

      The starting point should be forcing down emissions – might get there with the seaweed additive anyway rendering it a moot point. Doesn’t take into account the heinous waste of water to produce a kg of meat nor the use of land that could be producing cereals and legumes

      Have been on alternatives for ages – Beyond Burgwr and Impossible Foods’ alternatives are super

      • I want a source for doesn’t need meat.

        I’ve reduced my meat intake (slightly lol) with plant proteins and it’s easy to do and pretty damn tasty but I think it’s a big call to say we need zero meat – aren’t we at where we are evolutionarily because of meat consumption? Have we moved past the need for meat?

    • Leroy I for one agree with your arguments. This 43% legislation is a total fiction and mass immigration will overcome any magic wand waving about solar and wind. Look at the outcomes in Germany of pandering to the fake greens. Conservation and population control are the key factors for Australia. However when Perrottet and his father have a combined 22 children what chance do you have from the governing classes who seem to basically illiterate in these matters.

  2. Net zero (local human impact against local human abatement efforts) vs Net zero (local environmental abatement capability against local human impact). These are different things. One matches human impact to its local environment, the other artificially imposes a restriction on those human’s activities that is unrelated to its local environment, and artificially below the impact their environment can support. Making some humans live BENEATH the impact their local environment can support obviously allowing some other humans elsewhere to live BEYOND what their environment can support.

    Local environmental allowances dictated by nature, or by power & propaganda?
    THIS region may grow its emissions by X, this region must lower its emissions by Y (regardless of LOCAL environmental impact & abatement) power & propaganda making the decisions, not nature.

    Think about how much more sensible and manageable a determination like “Asia live within the environmental footprint the Asian landmass and waters provides for, Africa live within the environmental footprint the African landmass and waters provides for” is, and how much more in line with nature, than arbitrarily picking limits (up/down) or assessing everything on a global or global per capita basis is.

    Having societies look at their impacts in relation to their own environment, and live within it, vs basing their actions and allowances on global decisions and abatement of which they have no control over.

    Where is this discussion in Australia in relation to the environment and what our targets should be?

    How much carbon can the Australian environment, as it stands today, abate on an annual basis?
    How much wood do we consume, vs how much we grow and possess?
    How much fresh water do we have, what should our water usage target be, and what limits does that place on the population we can support, and hence what migration we should allow ourselves?
    Fit to place, not fit to arbitrary targets or global dictation.

    Commit to ‘net zero’ asks Australians to commit to ignorance and stupidity.
    Commit instead to live within our national means.

    So what are they? Totally missing from the environmental debate except at the real fringes.
    REAL environmental science vs globalist rhetoric.

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      Where is this discussion in Australia in relation to the environment and what our targets should be?

      Rendered impossible by people who still try to argue whether or not climate change is even real.

  3. 2023HomelessMEMBER

    Hi LVO. If you ever want to do an article on carbon or renewable energy markets. Please reach out. I’ve worked in this space for 15 years. And do brief other media. I value this website greatly and would appreciate being able to contribute.

    Which made your well deserved roasting about yelling at windmills make me laugh a lot.

  4. Bravo Labor and the Greens. This is long overdue. Our legislation won’t be any less flawed or aspirational than the average of other countries. But our stated position on climate change is very important for the health our diplomatic and trading relationships.

  5. Fishing72MEMBER

    Completely agree with you Leroy. That’s coming from someone who grows their own fruit and vegetables, catches their seafood , barters for organic eggs and doesn’t eat meat. There’s no one who holds a sustainable and natural impact on the environment closer to their heart than myself and I know that you’re on the right course.

  6. The Traveling Wilbur

    You don’t have to be a gum totin’, bicycle riding vegetable consuming GOM arborist to post here… but… it sure seems like a majority of proles that do are. Just an observation.