Climate Change Authority

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Part B Australia’s policies and progress to date

Part A of this Draft Report described Australian action in comparison to that of other countries, concluding that Australian action to address climate change is happening in the context of significant global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The role of domestic policy initiatives is to translate these high-level commitments into practical measures for a domestic transition towards a low-carbon economy.

Part B charts the policies that have been in place over the last two decades and assesses the extent to which they have been effective relative to other drivers of emissions changes.

Chapter 6 describes the major policy initiatives taken by Australia on climate change, including the proposed future policy framework by the current government. Policy initiatives include voluntary measures, regulatory measures, government funding and trading schemes.

Chapter 7 describes the trends in emissions since 1990, overall and by sector, and the drivers that underpin these. By assessing the changes at a detailed sector-by-sector level, the role of policy initiatives is explored. While policy has been an important driver of emissions reductions to date, this needs to be sustained and accelerated in order to contribute to Australia’s long term emissions reduction objectives.

This supports the following sections of the Draft Report in two ways:

  • the rates of emissions reductions to date provide points of comparison with the future rates of reduction recommended in Part C; and
  • Part D sets out the extent to which the required reductions are feasible, and the extent to which they may be achieved through domestic action and international emissions reductions.