Australia to 'Absolutely' Exploit and Use Coal Despite IPCC Warning
Oct 15 2018 | 10:02:51
coal-loving lawmakers dismissed the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) warning to phase out the polluting fossil fuel by 2050.
In a recent interview with
deputy prime minister Michael McCormack said Australia will
"absolutely" continue to use and exploit its coal reserves regardless of
what the IPCC report says.
Australia is particularly vulnerable to the effects of
climate change, with relentless drought, deadly wildfires and devastating bleaching at the iconic Great Barrier Reef. At the same time, Australia is one of the world's largest coal exporters, accounting for 37 percent of global exports.
In the major United Nations report on Sunday, the world's top climate
scientists said that limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C will
stop catastrophic global warming and help prevent Australia's imperiled
coral reefs from destruction.
However, McCormack insisted to SkyNews that the government will not
change its policies "just because somebody might suggest that some sort
of report is the way we need to follow and everything that we should
Coal mining, McCormack said, is very important to Australia because it
provides 60 percent of the country's electricity, 50,000 workers and is
its largest export.
He added that he has not "seen anything that's going to replace coal in
the near future" and maintained that coal will be an important part of
the energy mix for more than 10 years.
Environment minister Melissa Price, who used to work for the
mining industry, further advocated for coal and suggested the 91
scientists behind the IPCC report were wrong in their findings.
"I just don't know how you could say by 2050 that you're not going to
have technology that's going to enable good, clean technology when it
comes to coal," she told
ABC's AM program. "That would be irresponsible of us to be able to commit to that."
Prime Minister Scott Morrison maintains that Australia will meet its
Paris agreement targets to reduce carbon emissions by 28 percent from
2005 levels, even though the IPCC report advised it would need to be
closer to 45 percent, according to ABC.