A new report from some of the world's top experts on forest governance has criticised various international climate change accords including REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation) and REDD+ for their narrow focus on carbon storage which fails to stop rampant destruction of the world's most vulnerable forests and acts to further marginalise indigenous peoples.
Policy Plans released by Julia Gillard and her Climate Change Minister Penny Wong for mandatory fuel efficiency standards and a $2000 rebate for trading in pre-1995 cars for new fuel efficient vehicles, were cautiously welcomed by environmentalists while being criticised for not going far enough and being funded by cuts to other climate change action programs such as Carbon Capture and Storage and solar energy. "Under this plan, Australia's fuel efficiency standards for new vehicles will be about a quarter of a century behind China's when they are eventually law. We must make our cars cleaner quicker." said Don Henry, Australian Conservation Foundation executive director.
The public launch of the Beyond Zero Emissions report - Zero Carbon Australia 2020 - was delivered to an overflowing audience at Melbourne University last night. The report is one possible blueprint for acting on the challenge of climate change by converting the existing coal and gas fired carbon pollution dependent electricity generation to 100% renewables using only current technologies in ten years.
Scientists and the Wilderness Society have called on the Federal Government to urgently protect native forests in South East Australia as a method of locking up carbon, with new scientific research showing that the worldâ€™s most carbon dense forests are found in cool temperate climates of Australia, particularly the central highlands of Victoria.