Independent Member for Clark, Andrew Wilkie, will this morning table the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Amendment (Transparency in Carbon Emissions Accounting) Bill 2020.
Mr Wilkie’s Private Member’s Bill would require the Federal Government to include scope 3 emissions in reports of Australia’s carbon emissions, boosting transparency and accountability.
The implication for Australia’s greenhouse gas accounting at a national level is that fossil fuel exports, that are burnt for energy internationally, will be included in Australia’s emissions inventory. This amendment allows Australia to track its impact as one of the largest exporters of fossil fuels in the world and allows the public access to information about Australia’s role in very significantly contributing to global greenhouse gas emissions.
“The Prime Minister continues to state that Australia can do little to influence global climate change on the basis that our emissions make up just 1.3 percent of the world total,” Mr Wilkie said. “But when the carbon in fossil fuel exports is taken into account, Australia is actually the third largest exporter on the globe.”
The bill additionally amends the NGER Act to ensure that the Minister tables Australia’s national greenhouse gas inventory estimates in Parliament each quarter. This means the public will have full and prompt access to Australia’s greenhouse gas data.
“The Government should be open and transparent with its emissions data, rather than releasing it as it has done in the past – on a Friday night before the AFL and NRL grand finals, seven weeks after the Environment Minister had received the report,” Mr Wilkie said.
“We need to get real about climate change and end the climate wars which have stymied real action by this Parliament for far too long. The foundation of any good policy is expert driven evidence, so a key part of real climate action is ensuring transparent and accurate information.”
Scope 3 emissions are indirect greenhouse gas emissions. For example, this includes emissions which occur as a consequence of the activities of a coal mining operation, but which are not directly generated by the mining company. Scope 3 analysis looks at the potential CO2 the extracted coal will produce, which is then released into the atmosphere when the coal is burnt for energy.