Australian Prime Minister, Malcom Turnbull, made a pledge overnight in Paris to ratify the second phase of the Kyoto Protocol named the Doha Ammendment. He is committing to reduce 5% of the greenhouse gas emissions below 2000.
Australia is not the only who has submitted their acceptance for the protocol, 54 other countries such as Iceland, Norway, Mexico, Madagascar and Norway have accepted the requested to ratify the Doha Amendment. This means that there will be an overall 13% reduction in greenhouse emissions by 2020. The protocol covers the period of 20132-2020 as agreed upon during the 2012 United Nations Talks in Doha.
Malcom must now take steps to achieve this reduction target although the method has not been discussed yet by the government. During his speech on the first day of talks, he told 150 world leaders that he is optimistic in tackling global warming.
“But above all we do not doubt the capacity of humanity to meet it – with imagination, innovation and the prudence that befits those, like us, who make decision that will affect not just our own children and grandchildren but generations yet unborn” said the prime minister
With the support of the cabinet on Malcom’s side, Environment Minister Greg Hunt spoke about the Kyoto Protocol, “Australia will ratify Kyoto II with the support of the cabinet and party room”.
If the Kyoto Protocol does get ratified, it will be possible from now until 2020 to see a switch between the Emission Trading Scheme (ETS).
Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten said Malcom had played it safe with the treaty and Australia is capable of doing a lot more than what was originally planned. Mr Shorten states the Australian Prime Minister had tried to make the “right wing of his own party happy”.
President Obama and Bill Gates have launched a new initiative called the Clean Technology Initiative. Mr Turnbull have signed up and agreed to participate in this initiative doubling his research investment in Australia.