CANBERRA, Australia: Australia’s parliament, with the support of the Greens party and independents, passed legislation pledging to cut carbon emissions by 43 percent by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.
The law is the first climate action legislation passed since the Labor Party won power in May, but the government will face considerable challenges in passing more environmental bills.
“The passage of the climate change legislation sends a message to the world that Australia is serious about driving down emissions, and serious about reaping the economic opportunities from affordable renewable energy,” said Climate Change and Energy Minister Chris Bowen in a statement.
The new law will also require government authorities, such as clean energy and infrastructure financing agencies, to consider emissions targets in their decisions.
Industry groups have welcomed the legislation.
“Enshrining a policy in legislation gives businesses and industry greater clarity,” added Bowen.
As the new law only has a minority of support in the Senate, the ruling Labor party needs the votes of the Greens and at least one independent party to pass bills which are opposed by the Conservatives.