Milestone day for climate action receives mixed support from Queensland LNP

The Queensland Conservation Council (QCC) today celebrates a monumental day for climate action in Queensland with the passing of two legislations to lock into law Queensland’s 75 per cent emission reduction target and 80 per cent renewable energy target.

The peak conservation group welcomes the LNP Opposition’s public support for the emissions targets, but is concerned that they voted against the Bill to legislate Queensland’s renewable energy targets.

"It’s great to see that the Queensland LNP is publicly backing Queensland’s climate emissions targets, but voting against the Energy Transformation Bill sends a contradictory message,” said Dave Copeman, Director of the Queensland Conservation Council.

"The Bill had three components: the renewable energy targets, commitment to maintaining majority public ownership of our energy system and the jobs guarantee for impacted workers. The State Opposition needs to be upfront with the community about which of these they don’t support.

"Leadership involves making clear choices. The Queensland Government has developed a detailed plan for replacing coal power stations with renewable energy backed by storage.

"Right now a devastating 75 per cent of the surveyed sites on the Great Barrier Reef are experiencing Reef bleaching. Climate change is already hurting our communities and the places and wildlife we love as Queenslanders.

"Decisions are being made in boardrooms and government offices across the globe to decarbonise, so to protect our workers and communities, we need concrete plans to transform our electricity sector and economy. We can’t afford to leave our future up to chance.

"To provide certainty to the community and clean energy investors, we’d like to see the LNP Opposition commit to not repealing the legislation if they win the October election and deliver their own plan for reaching Queensland’s clean energy targets."

On the Clean Economy Jobs Bill, Dave Copeman said:

"This is a huge step forward for climate action in Queensland. Australia’s most polluting state now has one of the strongest emission reduction targets in the country.

"After a summer of more extreme and frequent weather events, it’s never been more obvious to Queenslanders that taking climate action is about keeping our communities safe."

On the Energy (Renewable Transformation and Jobs) Bill, Dave Copeman said:

"The Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan is the country’s most comprehensive plan for closing coal-fired power stations and replacing them with renewable energy backed by storage.

"Renewable energy targets provide certainty for investors and encourage more investment in new energy supply, which is vital especially as Queensland’s ageing coal-fired power stations have more frequent unplanned outages.

"Our research shows that Queensland is currently on track to reach our clean energy targets, with 13 new solar and wind farms likely to be commissioned across the state over the next three years.

"Alongside this impressive investment, we’d like to see stronger Queensland and Federal nature protection laws so that renewable energy projects are being built in locations where they will have a minimal environmental impact."