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Investors in mining are backing electrification resources over fossil fuels. In the year to October 2021, just one fossil fuel company listed on the ASX, while 42 companies listed that target electrification minerals copper, nickel, lithium cobalt, graphite and rare earths. Over half the companies aim to mine in Western Australia, with another seven headquartered
The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,000 Australians about their views on how Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) should be made available to the public, and why some parts of Australia are experiencing problems like pressure on the public health system, supply chain issues and staffing shortages. The results show that: Over seven
The LNG industry portrays itself as essential to WA’s economy, a sentiment echoed by the WA Government. However, LNG industry contributes just 1% of the WA state budget and two thirds of Western Australia’s gas is effectively given away by the Western Australian and Australian Governments with almost no royalties or tax being paid. The
The Victorian Government’s policy of capping of local government rates revenue in Victoria is a regressive move on economic, social and democratic grounds. By arbitrarily tying the growth in total rates revenue in each local government area to price indexes, the state government restricts the ability of local governments to respond to the COVID-19 crisis
In the last parliamentary sitting weeks of 2021, the Morrison Government and Labor Opposition negotiated a deal to pass “political campaigner” legislation, although the legislation now refers to “significant third parties” instead. Charities, including the Australia Institute, have expressed serious concerns that the legislation is ill-considered, rushed and designed to quell legitimate charity advocacy ahead
Licencing floodplain harvesting at lawful, sustainable volumes would be a major environmental, social and economic reform for the NSW Murray Darling Basin. There are also major implications for human health, community wellbeing, equity and the state budget. With so much at stake, public and government attention needs to be focused on the work of the
This report examines the policies of the largest Australian superannuation funds, highlighting their investments in companies involved in nuclear weapons development, production and maintenance (nuclear weapons companies).
Santos is trying to access Australia’s small amount of climate funding to subsidise increased fossil fuel extraction through a highly polluting activity known as enhanced oil recovery (EOR) – a process Santos has been using continuously since the mid-1980s. Numerous company documents show that Santos’ Moomba CCS project includes EOR and Enhanced Gas Recovery (EGR).
$3.9 billion has been spent by grants programs with ministerial discretion since 2013. $2.8 billion, or 71%, has been allocated to projects in Coalition seats. Funding has clearly favoured marginal seats at the expense of safe Labor seats and, in some cases, safe Coalition seats. In per capita terms, marginal Coalition seats have received $184
The Government’s proposed voter ID laws risk discouraging Australians from voting, in defiance of the country’s proud history of ensuring everyone can and does vote. There is no evidence that voter fraud is a problem or that voter ID would address it. The Government’s priority should be the 2.7 million Australians whose votes were not
The Australia Institute’s Research Director Rod Campbell gave expert economic evidence to Victoria’s Inquiry and Advisory Committee regarding the Fingerboards Mineral Sands Project. The project was recommended for rejection by the Committee. Rod was engaged by the community group opposing the development, Mine Free Glenaladale. Rod’s evidence showed that the economic assessment of the Fingerboards
2021 marks the thirteenth annual Go Home on Time Day (GHOTD), an initiative of the Centre for Future Work at the Australia Institute that shines a spotlight on overwork among Australians, including excessive overtime that is often unpaid. Last year’s report emphasised that 2020 had been extraordinary and difficult, and 2021 has brought little reprieve.
The Tasmanian Government’s proposals to strengthen the response to the climate crisis are a step in the right direction, but the proposed new law does not go far enough. The legislation still leaves Tasmania with rising emissions, reliant on carbon accounting to continue to achieve net zero emissions. Given Tasmania’s success in already reaching net-zero and 100% renewable energy, far more ambitious emission reduction targets than net zero by 2030 are warranted and achievable.
This synthesis report was conducted by Freddie Daley of the University of Sussex in collaboration with the Fossil Fuel Non- Proliferation Treaty Initiative, as well as key partners in each of the five countries analysed – Greenpeace Norway, The Australia Institute, Stand.earth, Uplift UK and Oil Change International. The scientific consensus is clear: limiting global
The Morrison Government’s ‘technology not taxes’ approach to climate change policy is little more than new branding for an old strategy – a strategy pioneered by the Howard Government back in the 1990s. Rather than introduce a carbon price, mandatory energy efficiency standards or restrictions of fossil fuel consumption or extraction, the Howard Government pursued
Australia’s target of net zero emissions by 2050 is inconsistent with its plans to massively expand coal and gas production. New fossil fuel projects under development in Australia would result in 1.7 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions each year – equivalent annual emissions of over 200 coal-fired power stations, twice as much as global
Information industries have lost some 60,000 jobs in Australia in the last 15 years, almost half during the COVID-19 pandemic. And a new research report highlights the need for active policy supports to stabilise the media industry, and protect the public good function of quality journalism. The new report, The Future of Work in Journalism,
While COP26 this November is focused on ratcheting up short-term ambition it must also finalise the ‘Paris Agreement rulebook’ including on carbon markets, climate finance and adaptation. The Australian Government will face growing pressure to not just increase its 2030 target but act in good faith on other key negotiating priorities like markets, finance and
The Morrison Government has released a ‘whole of economy plan’ to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. While they are yet to reveal the underlying economic modelling on which the plan was based, it is still possible to consider the plausibility of the results of the modelling even when the assumptions behind the modelling remain
Far from being a national leader in electric vehicle uptake, South Australia is already lagging other States and Territories across the country. While it is true that South Australia is a significantly smaller state than New South Wales, it is also true that the $36.3m in funding that has been offered as part of the
All the net reduction in national emissions between 2005 and 2020 were contributed by the land sector. Emissions from energy combustion, which in 2020 accounted for 72% of total emissions, were 2.0% higher than in 2005. Total energy emissions to the end of August 2021, as estimated by NEEA, again increased, as growing consumption of
Murray Darling Basin Governments are attempting to recover 450 gigalitres (GL) of water through off-farm water efficiency projects, with almost $1.6 billion in funding, or an average of $3,500 per megalitre. Murrumbidgee Irrigation (MI) has put forward a proposal that would recover 6,282ML at a cost of $124 million. This equates to $19,739 per megalitre
While it has been widely rumoured that the cost of securing National Party support for Scott Morrison’s commitment to net zero could be up to $20 billion in in budget spending for projects in National Party seats, the real cost of the deal is, according to an analysis of various recent climate change modelling done
The Australia Institute welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the Inquiry into the Closure of the Hazelwood and Yallourn Power Stations. The Australia Institute is an independent public policy think tank, based in Canberra. We carry out research on a broad range of economic, social and environmental issues. Two recent research papers by
The draft offsets policy undermines the NT Government policy of adopting Fracking Inquiry Recommendation 9.8 – that all life-cycle emissions from onshore gas projects be offset. The draft policy also proposes ‘indirect emissions offsets’ that are not utilised in any other jurisdiction and would be entirely without integrity. Indirect offsets would undermine other offset markets
The Australia Institute made a submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee, regarding a bill that would ensure decisions for Australia to go to war go through parliament. It is clear that there is a growing tendency on the part of democracies that are aligned with Australia for their national Executives
Climate of the Nation is the longest continuous survey of community attitudes to climate change in the country.
Like Australia, Germany has had a long and polarised debate about phasing out coal-fired power stations. Germany formed a multi-stakeholder group that negotiated a consensus to phase out coal power by 2038. A similar process could help Australia navigate the trade-offs inherent in such a change.
Despite a potential net zero by 2050 target announcement in coming weeks, it is increasingly clear that the Australian Government is not on track to meet such a target. Government policy shows no intention to reduce emissions, with fossil fuel project approvals even working to increase emissions. This briefing note outlines Government policies that are