The NSW government has committed to an ambitious new emissions reduction target, pledging to halve greenhouse gas pollution by 2030.
The 50 per cent target is a steep increase on the government’s previous 35 per cent goal to reduce emissions below 2005 levels by 2030.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said it was all part of the state’s plan to get to net zero by 2050.
“Our net zero plan is expected to attract more than $37 billion in private-sector investment into NSW,” she said.
“This policy is about putting policies in place to give industry and investors certainty, not only to protect our planet but to futureproof our prosperity.”
The interim target brings NSW in line with Victoria, which has a 45 to 50 per cent aspiration for 2030, and closer to South Australia which is aiming for more than a 50 per cent reduction by 2030.
South Australia is already more than 50 per cent of the way to achieving net zero emissions by 2050.
The commitment comes at a time when there is growing division within the federal Coalition over setting a net zero emissions target by 2050.
Nationals senator Bridget McKenzie this week openly criticised some of her Liberal colleagues for advocating for a target.
But in NSW, the Coalition partners are aligned.
Nationals leader and Deputy Premier John Barilaro has given his full support to the new target.
“The entire state will benefit from the economic and employment opportunities in low-carbon technologies,” Mr Barilaro said.
“We will continue to take action in a way that delivers more jobs and more investment for people in the city and the bush.”
The federal government’s current position is that net zero will “preferably” be reached by 2050 and it has committed to reducing emissions by 26-28 per cent by 2030.
NSW Environment Minister Matt Kean insisted the state government’s electric vehicle policy and its investment in renewable energy infrastructure would ensure the new target was met.
“In NSW we also aren’t just setting targets,” he said.
“As a result of our policies, the state’s emissions are projected to fall by 47 to 52 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030 under independently peer-reviewed modelling.”
On September 1, the NSW government began providing rebates and phased out stamp duty for some electric vehicles (EVs) as part of its strategy which aims to increase EV sales to 52 per cent by 2030–31.Internet Explorer Channel Network