Report by Australia economist suggests ambitious climate policy
An interim report on the economic impact of climate change on Australia — Oz’s version of the Stern Review — has been produced by economics professor Ross Garnaut. The government-commissioned Garnaut Review, which will be published in full in September, points out that Australia’s dry climate, heavy reliance on agriculture, and tight trade relationships with developing countries in Asia make it more vulnerable to the effects of climate change than other developed countries. It suggests that Australia should this year commit to reducing emissions 60 percent by 2050, and be prepared to reduce emissions even more if an effective global climate agreement ever emerges. Garnaut supports heavy government investment in carbon capture and sequestration, but also a cap-and-trade system with 100 percent auctioning of permits. “It is in Australia’s interests for the world to adopt a strong and effective position on climate change mitigation,” says the review, which, we’d just like to reiterate, was written by an economist.