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Polling: New Gas & Coal, Offsets
Polling across 5 federal electorates reveals a majority of voters support a ban on new gas and coal projects, and very few support unlimited carbon offsets to expand fossil fuels. uComms were commissioned on behalf of the Australia Institute to poll in the seats of Mackellar, Goldstein, Sydney, Bennelong and Moreton between 9-14 of March
New fossil fuel projects in Australia 2023
There are 116 new fossil fuel projects on the Federal Government’s annual Resource & Energy Major Project list, two more than at the end of 2021. If all proceed as estimated, they will add 4.8 billion tonnes of emissions to the atmosphere by 2030.
Polling – Carbon Offsets, New Fossil Fuels, Role of the Senate
Key Findings: 82% of Canberrans believe polluting projects should not be able to offset 100% of their emissions via carbon offsets, only 9% believe in 100% carbon offsets for projects Of those, 56% believe polluting projects should have to directly reduce their emissions, not use carbon offsets And 26% believe projects should be able to
Polling – Carbon neutrality, net zero and carbon offsets
Key results The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,012 Australians in January 2023, about their attitudes about carbon neutrality, net zero and carbon offsets. • An overwhelming majority of Australians (85%) have heard the term carbon neutral, but just one in three (33%) know what it means. • Fewer Australians have heard
ACCC Legal Letter
We are writing on behalf of the Australia Institute to ask that you investigate whether the Climate Active trademark program and its carbon neutral claims including its use by companies involved in the program, is misleading or deceptive under the Australian Consumer Law.
Polling – Electric vehicles in South Australia
The Australia Institute surveyed a representative sample of 616 South Australians about electric vehicles (EVs). Respondents were asked how likely it was that their next car would be an EV and their reasons for considering such a purchase. Key results: A majority of South Australians (56%) are considering purchasing an EV as their next vehicle,
Integrity and the Climate Change Authority
The scientific consensus is on the urgent need for rapid decarbonisation. However, the government’s key climate body the Climate Change Authority (CCA) is instead focussed on storing fossil fuels and developing the carbon offset industry.
Submission: National EV Strategy
Australia’s National Electric Vehicle Strategy is an opportunity to increase the supply of affordable electric vehicles for Australians and phase out the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles.
Submissions on reconsideration of fossil fuel projects under the EPBC Act
In early November 2022, Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek agreed to reassess 18 fossil fuel projects that had previously been approved under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act. The reassessment was requested by the Environment Council of Central Queensland, represented by the law firm Environmental Justice Australia.
Trade with no cap
The Australia Institute made a submission on draft legislation that would establish a new kind of carbon credit in Australia. The proposed Safeguard Mechanism legislation fails to clarify how new entrants will be managed and does not address integrity and additionality concerns around offsetting units.
Climate of the Nation 2022
The Australia Institute’s annual Climate of the Nation Report provides a comprehensive account of changing Australian beliefs and attitudes towards climate change, including its causes, impacts and solutions. For the first time, Climate of the Nation 2022 includes a chapter on Australians’ views on transport solutions, including quantitative polling and qualitative focus group studies.
It is no accident that there are no credible policies or regulatory measures to address rising emissions by industry in Australia. Nor is it an accident that there are no robust mechanisms to address misleading climate claims.
Polling – Fossil fuel sponsorship
The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,409 Australians on their attitudes towards fossil fuel sponsorship. Results show that the majority of Australians agree with statements about limiting fossil fuel sponsorship. Key results: Three in five Australians (60%) agree that fossil fuel sponsorship is the new cigarette sponsorship, more than double the number
Submission to Chubb Carbon Offsets Inquiry
The Australia Institute welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the Independent Review of Australia’s Carbon Credits (the Review) and we would be pleased to engage directly with the Review in the coming weeks. We understand that other stakeholders have been sought out for direct consultation already.
Safeguarding fossil fuels: Submission
The Safeguard Mechanism has to date safeguarded polluters. Extensive reforms are required to ban new gas and coal entrants, limit the use of carbon credits and develop an alternative fixed price payment to be directed by the Commonwealth to build climate solutions.
Polling Research: Boothby
uComms conducted a survey of 901 residents in the federal seat of Boothby on behalf of The Australia Institute during the evening of 7 September 2022 using self-completed automated voice polling methodologies. Key Results: A majority of voters in the seat of Boothby (53.5%) believe that Australia has some responsibility for the pollution from Australian
Submission: Climate Change & Consequential Amendments Bills 2022
The Australia Institute welcomes the opportunity to comment on the Climate Change Bill 2022 and Consequential Amendments Bill 2022 (hereafter ‘the Bills’). The Bills are a valuable framework to ensure transparency and accountability of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets, including by ensuring the provision of evidence-based advice from the Climate Change Authority to inform
Renewables & rural Australia
The technological shift away from coal to renewable energy for electricity generation is also a spatial shift. We are moving electricity generators to new dedicated Renewable Energy Zones (REZ) in parts of rural Australia that have not hosted energy utilities at this scale before. This report presents the first significant analysis of the spatial aspect
Polling – What is ‘clean hydrogen’?
The government defines ‘clean hydrogen’ as “hydrogen produced using renewable energy or using fossil fuels with substantial carbon capture and storage.”
Brown Coal, Greenwash
Despite being labelled as ‘clean energy’, none of the emissions HESC has produced in its pilot phase have been buried through Carbon Capture and Storage.
COP29 in Australia
Australia has never hosted a United Nations climate conference (COP) and the recent proposal from the Labor Party to bid for the 2024 COP in partnership with the Pacific could shift Australia’s reputation from climate laggard to regional leader. This shift should be accompanied by substantive changes to Australia’s climate policy, including on Australia’s climate
An Environmental Fig Leaf
Emissions have increased under Australia’s only climate policy, the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF).
Waratah Coal v Youth Verdict court case
The Australia Institute’s Research Director Rod Campbell was an expert witness in the precedent-setting case against Clive Palmer’s Waratah Coal Project in the Galilee Basin. The case was brought by Indigenous-led Queensland group Youth Verdict, who were represented by the Environmental Defenders’ Office (EDO).
Hot air won’t stop global warming
The Australian Government has identified carbon trading as a means to “work together to bring down emissions” across the Indo-Pacific region and to “help countries meet and report against their NDCs” through the use of carbon markets. It is unclear how Australia’s plans for fossil fuel expansion and pursuit of cheap abatement overseas will bring down emissions or help countries meet their climate targets.
Review of Tasmania’s Living Marine Resource Management Act 1995
Tasmania hosts some of the highest marine diversity and endemism on Earth, world’s best practice expertise in marine science and governance, and punches above its weight in economic contributions, thanks to our ocean.
Fossil fuel subsidies in Australia (2021-22)
In 2021-22, Australian Federal and state governments provided a total of $11.6 billion worth of spending and tax breaks to assist fossil fuel industries. This is a 12% increase on last year’s figure and 56 times the budget of the National Recovery and Resilience Agency. Over the longer term, $55.3 billion is committed to subsidising gas and oil extraction, coal-fired power, coal railways, ports, carbon capture and storage, and other measures.
Freedom of Information documents show that when designing the ERF CCS method, the Clean Energy Regulator consulted almost exclusively with fossil fuel companies and big emitters, while actively excluding independent researchers.
Cruisin’ for an exclusion
Government efforts to increase the supply of carbon credits in Australia suggest that proposed administrative changes to the Carbon Farming Initiative Regulations may be used as an opportunity to allow excluded projects to participate in the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF).
Allowing carbon credit projects on land that has been recently or illegally cleared would both incentivise land clearing and undermine the purpose of the ERF in reducing emissions.
Carbon cowboys and cattle ranches
The proposed REDD+ project in Oro Province of PNG covers an area twice the size of London and is expected to generate a huge 800 million carbon credits over its lifetime.
However, the available evidence fails to provide any assurance that this project has integrity, raising broader concerns about the types of carbon credits that Australia, other countries, and the private sector may use to meet their emission reduction commitments.