AP6 a smokescreen for the Australian government’s failure to address climate change

November 3, 2006

Friends of the Earth Australia is concerned that the Australian government will continue to mislead the international community as well as the Australian people with rash statements made this week that the Kyoto Protocol is dead and the Asia Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate (AP6) is the real solution to climate change.

“Kyoto is the only international agreement which has any hope of preventing dangerous climate change.  The AP6 has no emissions targets or timelines and by the Australian government’s own assessment will not deliver a net reduction in emissions” said Friends of the Earth’s Climate Justice spokesperson Emma Brindal.

“The Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (ABARE) released a report which claimed that the AP6 could reduce emissions by 30% by 2050, which on closer investigation revealed to be a 30% reduction on business-as-usual projections of emissions by 2050, not an absolute reduction in emissions.”

“Australia is one of the highest per capita emitters of greenhouse gases in the industrialised world. The Howard Government must urgently take responsibility to act and join the international community in ratifying Kyoto and committing to binding emissions reduction targets” said Ms Brindal. 

This week the Australian government announced projects worth $60 million to be funded by the AP6. Meanwhile, Australia exports $61.5 billion coal per year, in effect funding climate change.  In addition, of the project money announced this week, the largest amount ($8million) is going to a carbon capture and storage (also known as geosequestration)plant.

“Carbon capture and storage is unproven on a commercial scale, expensive, energy-intensive and potentially dangerous. It is simply a justification for our government’s continued reliance on dirty coal. We need to see legislated support and significantly more funding for renewable energy, rather than tokenistic projects such as the one-off solar project also announced.  Now is the time for Australia to start moving away from dirty coal and embrace real solutions to climate change.” said Ms Brindal.

For more information:
Emma Brindal :  0411 084 727