House debates

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Statements by Members

Climate Change

1:39 pm

Photo of Sharon ClaydonSharon Claydon (Newcastle, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

I would like to draw the attention of the House to the Climate Council's latest report, Hitting Home: Compounding Costs of Climate Change, which shows that the cost of extreme weather in Australia has more than doubled since the 1970s and totalled $35 billion over the past decade. These figures are alarming and deserve a national response. In accordance with our international obligations, Labor has adopted a net zero emissions target by 2050. And we are not alone: every state and territory in Australia, along with our major businesses, and 120 nations across the globe have also signed up to this target and are working to meet it. This now of course includes the United States, under a Biden presidency.

The Morrison government can no longer get away with a do-nothing approach. Both domestic and international pressure demands real action on climate change. Reducing our emissions is not only the right thing to do for future generations; it is also the right thing to do for our economic interests today. But we need a plan to ensure that no-one is left behind, that communities like Newcastle don't get left hanging out to dry because of this government's abject failure to plan. I urge the government to show responsible leadership and to sit with the opposition and the crossbench to put an end to these climate wars.