With the U.N climate summit in Glasgow a month away many countries have stepped up their commitments to cut Carbon emissions to slow global warming. However Australia one of the world’s biggest coal producers is accused of dragging its feet this week. Prime minister Scott Morrison said that he may not attend the summit Australia’s carbon emissions per person are among the highest in the world. It’s promised to cut them by 28 by 2030. But that’s less than most rich nations and it hasn’t agreed to deliver net zero emissions by 2050. A key summit target from new South Wales.
The devastating bushfires less than two years ago were the starkest warning yet for Australians experiencing first hand the consequences of a warming planet. But Australia’s commitments fall well behind other rich developed countries in July. The U.N ranked it last out of 170 member nations for its response to climate change. Australia’s record of reducing emissions stands above those who are claiming to achieve bigger things in the future. But haven’t achieved it. Australia is the second biggest coal exporter in the world and in the hunter valley. It’s the bedrock of the economy at quarry ming. They’ve been manufacturing coal mine drilling equipment for nearly 40 years. They are listening all the noise about going away from coal and they are try to be ready to pivot.
But they don’t have a road map for that. They just don’t know what is next. So they don’t know how to do that and it’s incredibly difficult to turn your mind to that when you’re in such a busy industry as they are now despite the global urgency climate change remains a divisive issue. In Australia it draws in the powerful fossil fuel industry and regional voters like the ones in this mining community or an anti-coal message doesn’t play well without the coal mine industry.