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Replacing coal power, to act on climate change

Across Australia, we’ve always had droughts. But with climate change, now we’re seeing more of them, and they’re getting more severe. Bushfire season across southern Australia used to start in spring; now, it’s mid-winter. Each summer, elderly Victorians and South Australians must now prepare for heat waves that last weeks on end. For many regional and remote Aboriginal communities, water supplies are running out and soaring temperatures are making day-to-day life unbearable.X

The impacts of climate change are being felt everywhere. Climate change is expected to drive more than 100 million people into extreme poverty across the world over the next decadeXOur Pacific neighbours face a terrifying future - Tuvalu is set to be uninhabitable by 2050, and by the end of the century, Kiribati is expected to be submerged entirely by rising seas caused by climate change.X

Scientists say that extreme weather events and the impacts of climate change will become even more severe unless we act now to significantly reduce our carbon emissions. But right now, Australia is heading in the wrong direction: our emissions are still going upX

Coal power generation is the single largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in Australia, being responsible for over one quarter of total emissions.X Given that burning coal is our leading contributor to climate change, moving our electricity supply away from coal is one of the quickest, most efficient ways of doing our part to act.X

There is a pathway to avoiding the worst impacts of climate change, and avoiding a catastrophic rise in global temperatures. Retiring every coal-burning power station over the next decade  and replacing them with clean energy generation and storage  is the simplest and most effective way for Australia to do our fair share of reducing greenhouse emissions to a safe level. It's our best shot to tackle climate change, protect people, and protect our planet's natural places.

 

Read more: 

  1. Drinking water in a remote Aboriginal town on the Nullarbor fringe has now depleted. ABC News, 5 November 2019. 
  2. World Hunger is on the rise again and climate change is the culprit. The Conversation. October 22, 2018
  3. Pacific Island nations urge world leaders to act as islands expected to sink, News.com.au, November 15 2017.  
  4. Australia’s annual carbon emissions reach record high. The Guardian, 14 March 2019.
  5. National greenhouse gas data from AGEIS for most recent reporting year 2017.  
  6. For Climate's Sake: Coal Free by 2030. Climate Analytics, November 2019. 

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