Labor: 50% Renewables by 2030
The Australian Labor Party has unveiled its new set of renewable energy targets which it will take to the next election. The 50% reduction by 2030 was unveiled at the ALP National Conference in Melbourne this week and sets an interesting pretext to the Liberal Party's target which is due to be announced in August.
The Federal Government's target will be taken to the Climate Summit in Paris later this year where the next round international pledges to tackle climate change will be agreed.
Labor's target represents a significant raising of the bar and one that will require widespread approval and policy to make it possible. Certainly the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) that was confirmed last week will form one part of that policy, but other factors such as the Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) are yet to be disclosed.
The 50% target comes only days after Japan, the fifth largest polluter globally, announced that their 2030 target was to reduce emissions by 25.4%. It is unlikely that the Liberal Party will match the target set by Labor, particularly in light of Japan's commitment to 25.4%, as well as China and US's commitment to 26-28% by 2025.
Such a bold target will certainly be raising eyebrows locally and internationally. This announcement could be a cornerstone in the next election as regressive renewable energy policy (with the exception of the Carbon Tax) and commentary have been viewed unfavourably by a large portion of the voting public. The Solar and Wind industry have been quick to endorse the announcement.