Australia Remains in Bottom 10 on Global Climate List, Despite Improvements

Australia’s climate action again ranks in the bottom 10 of countries assessed in the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2023. The CCPI is an annual analysis of climate performance by countries covering 92% of global emissions, conducted by international think tank Germanwatch, NewClimate Institute and CAN International.

Key Points:

  • Australia’s overall ranking moved up four places between CCPI 2022 and 2023 from #59 (6th last ) to #55 (9th last), placing in the bottom 10
  • Other countries ranking below Australia in the bottom 10 include Russia, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan and Canada – all renowned fossil fuel producers
  • Australia received ranking ‘very low’ in categories for ‘Greenhouse Gas Emissions’, ‘Renewable Energy’ and ‘Energy Use’, the same as 2022
  • Only the ‘Climate Policy’ category improved from ‘very low’ to ‘low’
  • The top three places in the CCPI remain blank while no country performed well enough to achieve a ‘very high’ ranking

“The Australian Government’s climate policy is a major improvement compared to the last government, but only a minor improvement when compared to other countries in the annual Climate Change Performance Index,” says Richie Merzian, Climate & Energy Director at The Australia Institute.

“The Australian Government needs climate policies that back in renewables and stop fossil fuels. Without a plan to stop new gas and coal mining, which could be done through reforms to the Safeguard Mechanism, Australia lags well behind other major economies.

“Australia has a lot of catching up to do after years of accounting tricks and hollow carbon credits. The Australian Government must weed out the greenwashing, including through the Chubb Review into the integrity and governance of the carbon market.

“If the Australian Government wants to convince the world it should host a UN climate conference in 2026, it needs to lead the pack, not lag in the bottom 10. Only a comprehensive plan to phase out fossil fuels can deliver that.

“While we have seen a nominal improvement in Australia’s climate policy compared to years of delay and denial from the previous Government, the implementation and integrity of those policies  remains unclear.”

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