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Australian Ethical

  •   5 October 2021

COP26: Australian Ethical calls on ScoMo to end Australia’s climate embarrassment

5 October 2021: We are now a few short weeks out from COP26, and the blame-shifting among the Liberals and Nationals on Australia's lack of net-zero targets has been ramping up. Incredibly, ScoMo has even suggested he may not attend COP26 - despite the UN itself criticising Australia's blatant lack of leadership when it comes to climate.

This blundering inaction has significant ramifications for Australia's economy and investment markets, and so John McMurdo, CEO & MD of Australian Ethical, is calling on ScoMo to take some decisive action, right now, for the good of Australia.

“It's taken far too long for the coalition government to finally acknowledge that immediate action is required by Australia to do its part for the climate crisis. It's also a shame so many conservative laggard politicians seem intent to remain on the wrong side of history on this issue.

“We believe these laggards will be voted out of office at the next election if they continue to block the coalition from forming a majority approval position on committing to net-zero before COP26.

“It’s time to end our national embarrassment when it comes to climate action and support for the fossil fuel industry.

“Scott Morrison must attend COP26 in person. He must make the net-zero pledge for Australia. And he must also reveal his so-called ‘plan’ for reaching net-zero, which he has alluded to so often in the media.

"This includes an end to the fence-sitting of encouraging investment in climate-friendly industries in one breath while pledging support for high emissions-intensity and fossil fuel industries in the next. 

“We also reject Josh Frydenberg’s suggestion that banks, super funds, and insurers should ‘lend to so-called dirty industries to help them transform’. We should not pour money into legacy industries that don’t have credible transition plans in the hopes they change of their own volition. Starving problem industries of finance sends a far more powerful message.

A climate-friendly industrial revolution

“Instead, Australia must go ‘all in’ on policy, incentives, and initiatives that will, in combination, create a climate-friendly industrial revolution.

“Many carbon-emitting industries must be transformed into zero-carbon versions like renewable energy, sustainable manufacturing, zero-carbon infrastructure, carbon-negative agriculture, and zero-emissions transport.

“During the last industrial revolution, the world’s most powerful economies were built upon industries that were destroying our planet.

“In the climate-friendly industrial revolution, Australia could emerge as a sustainable top-20 global economy, and potentially even become a renewable energy superpower. But this can’t happen without a government that has the courage to set a clear and uncompromised vision.

Capital markets

“A clear vision on zero-carbon industries would inspire Australian and global capital markets, and significant capital allocators such as Australian Ethical, to invest potentially unprecedented amounts back into Australia. 

“At the moment, global markets are downgrading Australia based on climate risk, and even local investors like us have been forced to look offshore for investments in climate-friendly industries. This needs to stop.

“If we want Australia to flourish with trillions of investment from asset allocators like Australian Ethical, the superannuation industry, and global institutional investors, we need policy certainty on climate.”



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