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Climate Bills

Senator Pocock has today confirmed his intention to vote in support of the Climate Change Bill 2022 and Climate Change (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2022 with amendments.

Senator Pocock intends to move amendments to the bills, including one co-sponsored by Senators Jacqui Lambie and Tammy Tyrrell.

The amendments are all aimed at strengthening the transparency, accountability and integrity of the legislation.

Senator Pocock has had constructive discussions with the government over the legislation and broader climate change policy. Climate Change and Energy Minister Chris Bowen has indicated that the Government will support some of the amendments Senator Pocock intends to move.

“I’ve said from day one that while the community has made our desire for greater ambition clear, the priority is getting a target locked in and legislated. But equally, that target must have integrity,” Senator Pocock said.

“I thank Minister Bowen for his constructive engagement in considering a range of amendments we have proposed on these bills.

“While we haven’t been able to reach agreement on all the proposed amendments, I am pleased that the Government has indicated they will support some amendments and consequently I will vote to pass the bills in the Senate.

“We still have a long way to go and a lot of work to do on Climate Policy if we are to catch up following a decade of inaction.

“Legislating a target is part of that, but so too is establishing a climate trigger, completely overhauling federal environmental law, reviewing Australian Carbon Credit Units with questionable integrity, ensuring a robust safeguard mechanism, incentivising the accelerated and accessible uptake of EVs, really tackling the massive issue that is invasive species as well as working to put an end to species extinction and biodiversity loss.

“The energy transition is a huge challenge and also an opportunity for Australia if we get this right.”

The amendments Senator Pocock intends to move when the climate bills come to the committee of the whole stage are available here:

Summary of amendments:

Following constructive discussions with the Government, Senator Pocock expects amendments pertaining to the below to be carried: 

  • The annual statement includes climate risk assessments
  • Advice on the annual statement is published before annual statement
  • There must be public consultation in relation to advice on the annual statement

Senator Pocock looks forward to moving additional amendments, which he encourages the Senate to consider and debate, which go to:

  • That the Charter of Budget Honesty be amended to require the production of carbon impact assessments (co-sponsored by Senators Lambie and Tyrrell)
  • That the annual statement include scope 3 emissions
  • That the Climate Change Authority advice on new or amended Nationally Determined Contributions consider best available scientific knowledge

Senator Pocock is also seeking commitments from government:

  • to consider a process that would see the setting out of what emissions reductions are expected of each sector
  • to review the ARENA Act with a view to removing any risk that funding will go to non-renewable technologies in future

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