October 2021

Scott Morrison’s ‘net zero by 2050’ emissions reduction plan will be filled with tricks and rorts

by Ben Oquist in The Canberra Times

Sometime this month Scott Morrison will announce a net zero by 2050 emissions-reduction target for Australia. This announcement will be made with the expectation of praise. However, much like the world was indifferent when Australia signalled it would no longer be using Kyoto credits to meet its Paris targets, so too will this announcement be

September 2021

Richard Denniss: Australia’s carbon credits are a joke. Taxpayer money is being wasted on ‘hot air’

by Richard Denniss in The New Daily

If a tree doesn’t fall in a forest, was the climate really saved? Sadly, such esoteric questions have become the main game in the topsy-turvy world of Australian climate policy, where rising emissions from the oil and gas industry are ‘offset’ by not chopping down trees. The polite term for the creation of dodgy carbon

Statement in response to the Clean Energy Regulator

Fundamental questions of integrity have been raised by the Australia Institute and the Australian Conservation Foundation in regards to the Emissions Reduction Fund’s avoided deforestation method. Rather than investigate the method in question, the regulator has sought to discredit the analysis, and revealed an alarming lack of understanding of its own methodology. A full statement

Over 60 scientists & experts call on NT Chief Minister Gunner to honour commitment to net-zero fracking emissions

Over 60 leading scientists and experts have published an open letter in the NT News, co-ordinated by the Australia Institute, calling on Northern Territory Chief Minister Michael Gunner to fulfill his commitment that all emission be fully offset or gas fracking should not go ahead. Chief Minister Gunner has committed to faithfully implement all the

Serious Integrity Concerns Around Australia’s ‘Junk’ Carbon Credits

One in five carbon credits issued by the Federal Government’s $4.5 billion Emission Reduction Fund (ERF) do not represent real abatement and are essentially ‘junk’ credits, according to new research by the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Australia Institute Climate & Energy Program. Key Findings: Australian Carbon Credit Units (ACCUs) generated by the ‘avoided deforestation’

SA Should Delay EV Tax as Victoria Hit by High Court Challenge

The announcement of a High Court legal challenge against Victoria’s controversial EV Tax means that the consideration of similar legislation here in South Australia should be delayed, The Australia Institute says. “This EV Tax has been a terrible idea from the beginning and now there is a serious legal cloud hanging over its constitutionality,” said

Gains in Renewables No Match for Rising Energy Emissions: National Energy Emissions Audit

New research by the Australia Institute shows that while Australia is benefiting from its highest share of renewables in the energy market ever, our emissions reductions from electricity generation is still worse than in countries like the US, UK & Japan, and emissions from Australia’s other energy combustion activities are rising. Reductions in electricity emissions

Australian Government Breaking Promise on Mining Tax Transparency

Correspondence between Resource Minister Keith Pitt and civil society groups involved in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) shows that the Australian Government is walking away from its promise to join the tax transparency initiative for the mining, oil and gas industry. The move comes despite major mining companies and civil society groups supporting Australia’s

Fracked: Gas in the Northern Territory

featuring Ebony Bennett, Rod Campbell and Mark Ogge

Extracting gas from the Northern Territory through hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) is one of the largest potential sources of carbon pollution in the world. In this episode we explore the climate cost of a potential policy backflip on opening up the NT to fracking, as well as the community opposition and the economics of it all.

SA Voters Overwhelmingly Back Increased Health Funding in Key Election Battle

New research from The Australia Institute shows that South Australians rank health, the economy and climate change as the three most important political issues in South Australia ahead of the next state election. The Australia Institute’s survey of a representative sample of 599 South Australians also found the vast majority of voters would prefer it

12 Organisations Open Letter: Abolish Stamp Duty on EVs in SA

An unlikely group of 12 companies and organisations, including car manufacturers, automotive groups and environmental organisations have come together to publish an open letter to the South Australian Parliament, calling on them to abolish stamp duty on electric vehicles. The letter, which appears as a full-page advertisement in The Advertiser newspaper today, comes as the

August 2021

EV Tax Delay to 2027 Welcomed but Small, Temporary Incentive Falls Short

The South Australian Government’s decision to delay its EV Tax until 2027 is welcome but the small, temporary EV incentive revealed today is insufficient to facilitate the rapid transition to zero emissions cars that our state needs, The Australia Institute says. Key points: As it stands, the 6000 one-off purchase incentives offered represent just 0.4%

Open Letter: Leading Energy Innovators United Against Proposed Subsidies to Coal Generators

Leading innovative energy companies have published an open letter, co-ordinated by the Australia Institute, to state and federal energy ministers and the Energy Security Board (ESB), opposing a key recommendation from the ESB to create a new market for ‘physical reliability’ that would subsidise loss-making coal power stations. The open letter signatories include Tesla Energy,

Code Red for Humanity: the sixth IPCC report

featuring Alia Armistead, Ebony Bennett and Richie Merzian

The sixth IPCC assessment report sounded the alarm on the climate crisis, finding that human activity is changing the Earth’s climate in “unprecedented” ways, with some of the changes now inevitable and “irreversible”. We unpack the latest report and the urgency of change with Richie Merzian and Alia Armistead from the Australia Institute’s climate &

South Australians Want EVs but Gov’s New Tax Would Suppress Demand

New research from The Australia Institute shows that South Australians would be less likely to make the switch to an electric vehicle if the government proceeds with its plan to copy the Victorian Labor Government’s EV Tax. The Australia Institute’s survey of a representative sample of 599 South Australians also found there is strong support,

New analysis: Australia’s energy transition among worst in OECD

When it comes to a clean energy transition, Australia is lagging significantly behind other countries according to new research published today by the Australia Institute’s Climate & Energy Program. The research, authored by leading energy analyst Dr Hugh Saddler, shows that according to key indicators of decarbonisation and energy transition Australia ranks very poorly, and

July 2021

$226 million government subsidy to NT frackers while gas takes charge of information program to Aboriginal communities

The Commonwealth Government is pouring $226 million of public money into subsidies for the NT gas industry, says a submission by the Australia Institute to a Senate inquiry. These massive public subsidies confirm the findings of the NT Fracking Inquiry that large scale fracking in the NT is unlikely to be commercially viable and will

What the bloody hell is a CBAM?

featuring Ebony Bennett, Hannah Melville-Rea and Richie Merzian

The EU has announced it will introduce a Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) as part of its efforts to reach net zero emissions by 2050. This has big implications for the Australian economy, especially carbon intensive expor industries. This week we talk to Richie Merzian and Hannah Melville Rea about what CBAMs are, how they

Coming soon: The carbon taxes that cannot be repealed

by Richie Merzian and Frank Muller in The New Daily

Carbon taxes are coming to Australia whether we like it or not. They are coming despite the triumphant ‘axing of the tax’ in 2014. They are coming despite the updated but equally loud ‘technology not taxes’ sloganeering from the Morrison government in 2021. They are coming despite our government’s refusal to commit to a net-zero

Majority of Australians support UNESCO Great Barrier Reef ‘in danger’ listing

More than seven in ten (72%) Australians support UNESCO’s recommendation to add the Great Barrier Reef to the World Heritage ‘in danger’ list, just 11% oppose. Furthermore, Queenslanders are most likely (50%) to think that climate change is the largest threat to the Great Barrier Reef and least likely (4%) to think that the health of the Great Barrier Reef is not threatened.

June 2021

SA Treasurer Imports Victoria’s ‘World’s Worst’ EV Tax

The South Australian Treasurer’s plan to import Victoria’s electric vehicle tax will cause the state to fall behind other jurisdictions with better EV policies, such as New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory, The Australia Institute has said. “The Treasurer may say he’s not in the business of importing taxes from Victoria, but that’s

The Great Gas Gouge: ACCC, AER Investigation Welcomed by Energy Retailers, Australia Institute

Electricity retailers and the Australia Institute have welcomed confirmation that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and the Australian Energy Regulator (AER) are investigating a series of “high-price events” in May where it seems that withholding of supply in the National Electricity Market (NEM) led to massive increases in the wholesale price. Key points:

Australia Institute Welcomes NSW Nation Leading EV Strategy

The Australia Institute has welcomed the New South Wales Coalition Government’s Electric Vehicle Strategy released today. The NSW Government electric vehicle strategy includes: $3,000 rebates on the purchase of 25,000 new EVs under $68,750, Exemption from stamp duty for EVs below $78,000 from September 2021 and all EVs from 2027, A deferral of their EV

Pressure on SA as NSW Reveals Nation Leading EV Strategy

The Australia Institute has welcomed the New South Wales Coalition Government’s Electric Vehicle Strategy released today and called on the South Australian Government to show similar leadership in their State Budget on Tuesday. Key points: Today the NSW Coalition Government announced an electric vehicle strategy that includes: $3,000 rebates on the purchase of 25,000 new

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