Our Plan

Issue 17

Protecting Our Environment

INVESTING IN RENEWABLE ENERGY

In 2016, there was a five-fold increase in investment in renewables.

According to Ernst and Young, Australia is one of the top 10 most attractive countries in the world in which to invest in renewables.

We are supporting the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) with over $1 billion of grants to invest in new renewable projects. For example, grants for 12 new large-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) projects which will triple Australia’s large-scale solar capacity from 240 MW to 720 MW – enough to power 150,000 Australian homes.

The $10 billion Clean Energy Finance Corporation will continue to operate as a “green bank” financing new technologies.

By Building Snowy 2.0, we will make renewable energy reliable by increasing storage by 50%, adding 2,000 megawatts of renewable energy – enough to power 500,000 homes.

REDUCING EMISSIONS

Australia beat our first Kyoto target by 128 million tonnes of greenhouse gases. We are on track to beat our 2020 target by 224 million tonnes.

We have committed to an ambitious, responsible emissions reduction target of 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

We are supporting practical emissions reduction projects through the Emissions Reduction Fund like energy efficiency, capturing landfill gas and boosting soil carbon.

Through our practical approach, we have secured 189 million tonnes of emissions reductions at a low average cost of $11.83 per tonne. (This compares to Labor’s Carbon Tax, which reduced emissions by less than 12 million tonnes at a cost of $15.4 billion – around $1,300 per tonne.)

PROTECTING THE BARRIER REEF

When the Coalition came to office in 2013, we ended all five dredge disposal plans and put a ban on future dredge disposal projects in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

As a result of the Coalition’s actions, the World Heritage Committee removed the Reef from the ‘in-danger’ watch list and praised Australia as a global leader in reef management.

Our Reef 2050 Long-Term Sustainability Plan has been endorsed by the World Heritage Committee and guides our work with the community, scientists, industry, farmers and others to boost the Reef’s resilience.

Together with the Queensland Government, we are jointly investing $2 billion over the next decade to ensure the health of the Reef. This includes the creation of a new $1 billion Clean Energy Finance Corporation Reef Fund that supports clean energy projects in the Reef catchment area (for example, water efficient irrigation systems or upgrades to coastal sewage treatment plants).

ANTARCTIC SCIENCE AND RESEARCH

The Coalition Government has made an unprecedented financial commitment to Antarctic science and research, including an investment of $1.9 billion for a new ice breaker.

On top of this, the Coalition committed an additional $255 million in funding over the next ten years to greatly enhance Australia’s Antarctic operations and science capabilities. This includes $55 million for infrastructure and $200 million for the ongoing Australian Antarctic Program.

We have committed up to $50 million to construct a modern station at Macquarie Island to provide a year-round capability for scientific monitoring and priority research.

PROTECTING THREATENED SPECIES

Since 2014, the Coalition Government has invested over $210 million for species conservation.

Our Threatened Species Strategy outlines achievable targets to turn around the trajectory of 20 priority birds, 20 priority mammals, and 30 priority plants by 2020.

The Threatened Species Strategy also commits to the creation of five feral cat-free islands, 10 mainland feral cat-free wildlife enclosures, and the culling of two million feral cats.

We have appointed Australia’s first ever Threatened Species Commissioner, created a $5 million Threatened Species Recovery Fund and launched the first ever Threatened Species Prospectus.

LANDCARE

An allocation of $1.1 billion over seven years from 2016-17 to 2022-23 for continuation of the National Landcare Program to support local communities deliver on-ground action.

This includes funding for: the Regional Land Partnerships Program to deliver natural resource management at a regional scale; the eradication of the Red Imported Fire Ant; and the management of World Heritage sites.

Information current as at December 2017