Tony Abbott

A new report by the Climate Council shows that Australia has lost 70% of new investment in renewable energy as a result of the Abbott Government’s review of the the Renewable Energy Target and it’s stated desire to reduce the target from 41,000 gigawatt hours to about 26,000 gigawatt hours by 2020.

Meanwhile, the Climate Institute, using several methods to calculate a country’s “fair share” of emission reductions needed to contain global warming to 2ºC, has found that Australia should reduce net emissions by at least 40% of 2000 levels by 2025 and 65% to 75% by 2035.

At the same time, the Guardian Australia, has revealed that US and European Union negotiators have also been unsuccessfully lobbying Australia to back a pledge by G20 leaders to announce their post-2020 greenhouse emission reduction targets early, in order to improve the chances of a deal at next years United Nations meeting in Paris. Europe has already indicated a 2030 target of at least 40% below 1990 levels. China and the US have promised to unveil their pledges early next year.

Australia has only stated that it would consider its post-2020 targets as part of (another) review in 2015.

The Abbott Government’s faith in coal, rather than renewables, to support the Australian economy and be “good for humanity” had yet another setback last week when a tender for 500MW of solar capacity in India resulted in bids as low as  8.6 cents per kilowatt hour. According to the Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis,  a new coal-fired plant using imported coal would require a price between 10 and 11 cents per kilowatt hour.