Conservation groups call for action from new Australian govt

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Xinhua News

23rd May 2022 – (Sydney) Environmental and conservation groups in Australia have called for climate action by a new government following Saturday’s federal election, which has been dubbed by many as a “climate election.”

“The trends across the country show a majority of Australians care deeply for bolder climate action and integrity in politics. It is a huge win (for) the environment at a time when nature needs us most,” the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) CEO Kelly O’Shanassy said Sunday.

The group said a new government provides opportunity for an environmental “reset” as Labour Party leader Anthony Albanese looks to make environmental conservation a part of his legacy in office.

“Together we can end the climate wars. Together we can take advantage of the opportunity for Australia to be a renewable energy superpower,” said Albanese in his election victory speech.

While welcoming a more ambitious gas emissions reduction target, O’Shanassy said that more would need to be done to reduce Australia’s reliance on coal and gas.

“Labor’s goal to have 82 percent of our electricity generated by renewables by 2030 is a step in the right direction, but the new government must reconsider its position on new coal and gas projects. It’s not what Australians want, nor what our environment needs,” she said.

Similarly, marine conservation group Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) called for the government to revise its emissions targets to reduce emissions by 75 percent by the end of the decade and achieve net-zero by 2035.

AMCS CEO Darren Kindleysides welcomed 200 million Australian dollars (about 142 million U.S. dollars) in funding pledged for reef recovery projects over the next three years.

“(We support) promises to look after our precious environments by strengthening environment laws and protections for threatened and endangered species,” said Kindleysides.

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