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The Australian Conservation Foundation’s first assessment of the main political parties’ climate and environment policies gives both Liberal and Labor a score below 50 per cent.
The scorecard rates the policies of the Coalition, Labor, the Greens, the Democrats and Family First on climate change, water and the environment.
“While Labor has committed to ratify the Kyoto Protocol and the Coalition hasn’t, in total the major parties are failing on climate change and the environment,” said ACF Executive Director Don Henry.
“Modest or weak climate change policies, a poor performance on forests and a lack of action on water and sustainable cities means both major parties have low scores.
“We are hearing a lot of talk and not seeing enough action on climate change from both major parties.
“The Greens and Democrats and scoring well, while Family First’s scores are poor.
“All parties and candidates should be in no doubt climate change will be a huge consideration when Australians vote on 24 November.
“The big questions for politicians who want to be taken seriously on climate change are: Do they support strong binding targets to cut emissions? Will they legislate to massively boost the amount of electricity sourced from clean, safe renewables? And will they ratify the Kyoto Protocol?
“We urge all parties to achieve a ‘high distinction’ on climate and environment by campaign’s end – our children’s future deserves nothing less,” he said.
“ACF is strictly non-party political – we do not advocate a vote for any particular party or candidate. But we are vigorously and unashamedly pro-environment.”
ACF’s scorecard will be updated every week during the election campaign to reflect new commitments from the parties.