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Businesses not averse to GHG targets: big hitters want fast technology improvement and adoption, credible and rising carbon price signal linked to long-term target

Posted by gmarkets on 3 September, 2007

According to Nigel Wilson, The Australian Business & Climate Group (ABCG) said an emissions trading system by itself would not drive the investment in technology needed to meet greenhouse gas reduction targets, reported The Australian (1/9/2007, p.32). Conventional wisdom challenged: The group comprised Deloitte, Anglo Coal, BP, Mirvac, Rio Tinto, Santos, Swiss Re, VicSuper and Westpac. While it was the first time they have joined together on climate change, some ABCG members were among the original companies to challenge the conventional wisdom in the resources sector: that greenhouse gas emissions targets would damage industry.

Emissions regime needs to proceed quickly: In a report published on 31 August, the group said an emissions trading system needed to be accompanied by a broader strategy to support low-emissions technologies for climate targets to be met. “The rate of technology improvement and subsequent adoption must be faster than the usual commercial time frames if these technologies are to be available at scale, performance and at an acceptable cost when required to meet challenging emissions trajectories,” the report said.

“Credible and rising” signal required: The report was released ahead of the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation forum leaders’ summit in Sydney next week, which is expected to deliver an “aspirational” declaration that the 21 APEC member countries will look at measures to curb greenhouse gas emissions. The Australian emissions system needs to have “a credible and rising carbon price signal linked to a long-term emissions target”, it added. The broader strategy needed to include national risk assessment, an energy security policy, forestry, water and land policies and international cooperation. The report said any solution must be on a national basis.

The Australian, 1/9/2007, p. 32

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