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The government’s sudden passion for climate technology is newfound and insincere

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The government's sudden passion for climate technology is newfound and insincere
Photograph: Lukas Schulze/Getty Images. Opinion piece by Simon Holmes à Court – senior advisor to the Climate and Energy College at Melbourne University and sits on the board of the Smart Energy Council in Australia.

If you’re committed to the Paris agreement – to keep the increase in global average temperature to well below two degrees above pre-industrial levels, and pursue efforts to limit the increase to 1.5 degrees – then at a minimum, logically, scientifically, you’re committed to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

So far, at least 77 countries have committed to the target, as has every state and territory in Australia. The fact that prime minister Scott Morrison is pushing back hard against the calls for such a target sends yet another strong signal that his government still denies the need to tackle climate change. Sensing it must be seen to do something, but committed to doing nothing substantive, the government is arguing that investing in technology is the superior pathway to… to… to what? Are billions of dollars of public funds about to be allocated to a strategy that delivers on an unspoken goal? This passion for technology is newfound and insincere. In truth, our government has a long history of undermining climate technologies. […]

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