Tasmanians support stronger action on climate change

Climate of the Nation 2021 Benchmark Report – Tasmanian supplement

Amid the Tasmanian Government’s announcement to legislate net zero by 2030, new research shows Tasmanians have expressed their support for stronger action to prepare for and adapt to the impacts of global warming (61%, compared to 55% nationally), and six in ten (62%) oppose any new fossil fuel projects.

The Australia Institute’s annual Climate of the Nation benchmark research has produced a Tasmanian supplement for the first time, to provide additional insights into Tasmanian perspectives on climate and energy. The Climate of the Nation report has tracked Australian attitudes on climate change for over a decade, since 2007.

Tasmanians have expressed stronger ambitions that other respondents across a range of questions, highlighting just how far off the Tasmanian Government’s plans are from community sentiment.

The 2021 Climate of the Nation finds that:

  • The vast majority of Tasmanians (73%) are concerned about climate change.
  • Tasmanians do not support a ‘gas-fired recovery’ from the COVID-19 pandemic – just 11% prefer Australia’s economic recovery were primarily powered by investment in gas, compared to two in three Tasmanians (66%) who prefer it powered by investment in renewables.
  • More than two-thirds of Tasmanians (69%) agree state governments should act on climate change regardless of what other actors are doing, compared to 10% that disagree.
  • Tasmanians want Australia to be a world leader on climate change – More than two-thirds (69%) agree Australia should be a world leader in finding solutions to climate change, compared to 9% that disagree.
  • Tasmanians are more likely than other respondents to oppose the amount of government money ($10.3 billion) used to subsidise the fossil fuel industry in the 2020-21 budget year (62% oppose, compared to the 57% nationally; 16% support, compared to 23% nationally).
  • Almost three-quarters of Tasmanians (73%) support fully electrifying the state bus fleet by 2030.

“Tasmanians are concerned about the growing impact of climate change, and they want their government to take strong and specific actions to address it,” said Eloise Carr, Director at The Australia Institute Tasmania.

“Tasmanian voters are supportive of the State Government taking a leading role in acting on climate change, regardless of what other actors are doing.”

“The Government’s announcement to legislate net zero by 2030 is a good start but does not go far enough. They need to legislate the mechanisms that will get us there. We also need sector specific targets, mechanisms to achieve those and public accountability.”

“While targets and commitments to tackling climate change are welcome, Tasmanians want action with a majority supporting a halt on the approval of new gas, coal and oil projects.”

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