Independent seeks emissions target in law

Warringah MP Zali Steggall wants a 60 per cent target for emissions reduction by 2030.
Warringah MP Zali Steggall wants a 60 per cent target for emissions reduction by 2030.

An independent MP has sought to get parliament's backing to legislate the government's new climate target of net-zero emissions by 2050.

Warringah MP Zali Steggall moved on Wednesday for her climate change bill to be debated immediately, a day after Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the new target but said he would not be enshrining it in law.

Ms Steggall's bill would not only legislate the target but put in place a 2030 target of a 60 per cent reduction in emissions on 2005 levels - well above the government's mark of 26 to 28 per cent.

It would also set up a Climate Change Commission to provide independent advice to the government and parliament, a new system of emissions budgeting and an annual national climate change risk assessment.

Ms Steggall said while the net-zero target was welcome it fell well short of the 2015 Paris Agreement commitment for countries to take action to keep global warming under 2C.

She said the latest scientific advice found the current emissions cut pledges - which will be discussed at the COP26 talks in Glasgow next week - had the world on track to 2.7C warming.

"It's time to stop playing politics with our future and listen to the science," she said

"Cuts of at least 55 per cent by 2030 are needed ... the world needs an orderly transition away from fossil fuels."

The bill will also ensure there are transition plans in place for regional and rural areas.

Australian Associated Press