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Where do they stand? - Election 2022

There are many analyses out there, but not many places you can find all the detail in one place. So, where do the parties actually stand on critical climate policy topics?

This guide is an objective, non-partisan comparison of a non-exhaustive selection of Federal political parties' stated climate and related policies (downloaded during March 2022). Australian Parents for Climate Action's key policy positions are included for reference. 

This guide has been prepared for supporters of Australian Parents for Climate Action by the wonderful volunteer policy and research team.

You can also download a 4-page printable version here. 

Version 1, April 2022. Prepared by volunteers. Please advise errors or omissions via [email protected] Extracts herein may not include all relevant policies: we encourage readers to refer to the original party policy documents. Authorised by Nic Seton, Australian Parents for Climate Action, Sydney.

Policy Overview

Australian Parents for Climate Action position: All Australians have a right to a safe and healthy future, with climate change limited to no more than 1.5°C of global warming.

Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party What we stand for (alp.org.au)
Centre Alliance Policies - Centre Alliance
The Greens Greens Election Policy Platform 2022 | Australian Greens
Liberal / National Party Liberal.org.au - Our Plan
The New Liberals Policies | TNL
One Nation Party Policies - One Nation
The Reason Party Policy Suite - Reason Australia
Sustainable Aust. Party Policies - Sustainable Australia Party
United Australia Party National Policy - United Australia Party
Independents Ask your local independent candidate(s) where they stand on climate policies or check their web sites.
There’s a useful (but non-exhaustive) list of pro-climate action independents available here. Some of their policies are described below.

Emissions Reductions

Australian Parents for Climate Action position (based on recommendations of the Climate Targets Panel and the Paris Agreement's equity principles, which require wealthy, high-emitting nations to make cuts above the global average):

  • Emissions reduction target (ERT) of 75% by 2030 (from 2005 levels)
  • Net zero by 2035 - 100% renewable electricity by 2030
Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party
  • ERT of 43% by 2030
  • Net zero by 2050
  • 50% renewable electricity by 2030, and investment in energy efficiency
Centre Alliance ERT of 26-28% by 2030
The Greens
  • ERT of 75% by 2030
  • Net zero by 2035
  • 100% renewable energy by 2030 via public investment in large-scale renewables and storage
Liberal / National Party
  • ERT of 26%-28% by 2030
  • Net zero by 2050
  • No future renewable electricity target; various investments in renewables including Snowy 2 and in the Hunter Valley
The New Liberals Net zero by 2030
One Nation Party One Nation believes Australia should withdraw from the Paris Agreement, citing fears of economic damage and job losses
The Reason Party No stated targets; supports immediate climate action to limit warming to 2°C
Sustainable Aust. Party
  • ERT of at least 50% by 2030
  • Net zero by 2050, with a preferred target of 2035
United Australia Party No stated emissions reduction policy
Independents
  • In Monash, Deb Leonard supports an ERT of 74% by 2030 and net zero by 2035.
  • In North Sydney, Kylea Tink calls for an ERT of at least 60% by 2030 and Net Zero by 2040.
  • In Warringah, sitting MP Zali Steggall targets an ERT of 60% by 2030 and Net Zero by 2050, and an orderly transition to 80% renewable energy by 2030.
  • In Goldstein, Zoe Daniel supports an ERT of 60% by 2030, and a commitment to 80% of renewable energy by 2030.

Australian Parents for Climate Action  calls for governments to rapidly phase out all economic and planning supports to the fossil fuel industry, including:

  • Removal of subsidies (which have been estimated at over $10 billion a year in Australia)
  • Moratoria on new projects
  • A carbon price charged at point of supply; with proceeds distributed to all Australians (based on the principles of the UNSW Australian Carbon Dividend Plan)
  • Banning advertising, sponsorship, political donations and lobbying by companies that produce fossil fuels
Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party The ALP has no stated plans to phase out coal and gas, although it realises coal plants will close.
  • No plans to intervene in the Adani Coal mine, but does not support public funding of the mine, and says it "must stack up environmentally and financially".
  • Considers gas to be a transition fuel"
Centre Alliance No stated plans to phase out fossil fuels.
  • Energy policy focuses on bringing down domestic prices by prioritising domestic use over exports, and requiring gas producers to "use or lose" their gas reserve.
  • - Supports Frontier Economics' emissions trading scheme.
The Greens The Greens will:
  • Stop subsidies to coal, oil and gas corporations.
  • Immediately ban new coal, oil and gas projects and phase out the mining, burning and export of thermal coal by 2030.
  • Implement a carbon price and levy on climate pollution we export.
  • Ban all political donations from the mining and resources sector.
  • Stop Resource Ministers and advisers from working for the fossil fuel industry within five years of leaving parliament.
Liberal / National Party The LNP Government has no plans to phase out coal or gas and is actively investing in fossil fuels.
  • Approved the Adani Carmichael coal mine.
  • Committed up to $600 million in funding to a new gas-fired power station in the Hunter Valley.
The New Liberals No stated policies related to fossil fuel subsidies, planning or advertising.
One Nation Party One Nation calls for more investment in fossil fuels and nuclear power, and strongly opposes subsidies for renewable (solar and wind) projects. It supports:
  • A national plan to build new "low-emission" coal-fired power stations.
  • The development of on-shore oil reserves and the capacity to refine fuels for domestic supply.
  • The investigation of nuclear power in Australia.
The Reason Party Reason believes government must commit to put in place the building blocks of large-scale industrial transformation in the 2030s and 2040s. It supports:
  • Incentives to reduce emissions in large industrial facilities.
  • The establishment an Industrial Transformation Future Fund to support low- and zero-emissions industrial asset replacements from the 2030s onwards.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP will:
  • Phase out fossil fuel subsidies.
  • Impose a moratorium on all new coal mines in Australia and all new fracking, including for coal seam gas."
United Australia Party No stated policies regarding fossil fuel subsidides, planning or advertising.
Independents
  • In Cowper, Carolyn Heise supports the rapid phasing out of Government subsidies to the fossil fuel sector and a ban on gas, coal and oil exploration throughout her electorate and along its coastline.
  • In Boothby, Jo Dyer supports a moratorium of all new coal mines, mine extensions, and new gasfield exploration and drilling; and a stop to fossil fuel industry subsidies.
  • In Kooyong, Monique Ryan seeks to end taxpayer subsidies to fossil fuel industries, accelerate electrification and decarbonise our electricity supply.
  • In Wentworth, Allegra Spender seeks to end the annual $11.6B in fossil fuel subsidies and will act to attract the investment needed for Australia to become a clean energy superpower.

Australian Parents for Climate Action position : Encourage and support other countries to raise their emissions reduction ambitions in line with the 1.5°C objective of the Paris Agreement.

Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party Bid to host UN COP climate change summit in partnership with other Pacific nations to improve the nation’s credentials with the region on the issue.
Centre Alliance Not stated.
The Greens Not stated.
Liberal / National Party Not stated.
The New Liberals TNL wants to restore “Australia’s potentially significant dual leadership and ‘trusted adviser’ roles within our region”.
One Nation Party Not stated.
The Reason Party Not stated.
Sustainable Aust. Party
  • ERT of at least 50% by 2030
  • SAP will "encourage all countries to meet the same or similar climate goals”.
United Australia Party No stated foreign policies apart from processing Australian minerals on shore.
Independents
  • In Hughes, Linda Seymour wants Australia to be a "genuine contributor to the global effort" to limit warming to 1.5°C, and will advocate for policies that "return Australia to its rightful place as a respected global citizen contributing to reducing global carbon emissions".

Economy

Australian Parents for Climate Action position : Rapidly develop Australia’s zero emissions economy including capabilities to export zero emissions energy and socially useful/responsible products to assist trading partners with their emissions reduction efforts.

  • Emissions reduction target (ERT) of 75% by 2030 (from 2005 levels)
  • Net zero by 2035 - 100% renewable electricity by 2030
Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party The ALP plans to:
  • Develop the hydrogen economy with $1 billion plan to create new jobs, support new businesses, and supercharge the renewable energy industry.
  • Have electric vehicles (EVs) comprise 50% of new car sales by 2030.
  • Introduce vehicle emission standards.
Centre Alliance The Centre Alliance supports:
  • Looking into the applicability of California’s vehicle emissions standards to Australia.
  • Making taxpayer-funded research into renewable energy and climate change more easily available to Australian industry.
  • Stopping "the importation of substandard and unsafe products related to renewable energy and/or climate change".
The Greens The Greens plan to develop Australia's green manufacturing and EV industries, while also driving down vehicle pollution by introducing new standards, and improving public transportation, walking and cycling routes. Notable plans include:
  • Develop local EV manufacturing and build EV charging stations across the country.
  • End the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030.
  • Invest in electric buses and high-speed rail from Melbourne to Brisbane.
  • Introduce vehicle pollution standards.
  • Develop new green export industries, including green hydrogen and minerals processing.
  • Ensure the government buys locally made products that are made with clean, green materials and power.
Liberal / National Party LNP plans to:
  • Develop a national hydrogen strategy as part of its clean energy exports industry.
  • Develop new export markets for green steel and green aluminium.
  • Develop a National EV strategy.
  • Ban the export of plastic, paper, tyres and glass waste.
  • Encourage fossil fuel companies to use renewable energy to reduce their emissions.
The New Liberals TNL plans to have EVs comprise 100% of new car sales in Australia by 2030. It also proposes to:
  • Establish vehicle emission standards.
  • Convert the Federal Government-owned cars to EVs and work with other governments to roll out electric buses across the country.
  • Establish an EV manufacturing hub and a domestic battery supply chain.
  • Develop a car sharing framework and vehicle buyback schemes.
One Nation Party Not stated.
The Reason Party Reason supports rapidly transitioning Australia to an electric economy, including by:
  • Transitioning the coal industry to decentralised green energy production and export.
  • Having EVs comprise 100% of new car sales in Australia by 2030 and ensuring buildings and the electricity grid are EV-ready.
  • Subsidising the production and sale of EVs, removing price barriers for consumers and stimulating local industry.
  • Increasing the truck width limit in Australia from 2.5m to 2.6m, so low-emissions models made for the EU or US can be used in Australia without expensive modifications.
  • Conducting targeted trials of zero-emissions trucks, particularly hydrogen trucks, to assess their performance under Australian conditions and practices.
  • Imposing a renewable hydrocarbon standard for diesel, aviation fuel, and shipping fuel.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP plans to:
  • Renegotiate all Free Trade Agreements.
  • Expand state-based rail and/or bus networks, and halve the price of urban, regional and rural public transport.
  • Improve walkways and cycleways.
  • Support the uptake of EVs and look into the feasibility of a majority Australian-owned electric car company.
  • Establish major regional centres dedicated to the repair, re-sale and responsible recycling of electronic waste and household goods, as well as a repair café in every suburb and town.
United Australia Party UAP seeks to develop Australia’s nuclear industry to “help solve Australia’s energy problems".
Independents
  • In Casey, Claire Ferres Mills supports having EV comprise at least 50% of all new car sales by 2030 and the creation of a circular economy in partnership with government, academia, and the water and waste and resource recovery sectors.
  • In Nicholls, Rob Priestly seeks to invest in bioenergy production, suggesting that up to 20% of Australia's energy requirements can come for bioenergy.
  • In Hughes, Georgia Steele supports federal policies for renewable energy creation and storage, clean transportation, investment and export of renewable energy and policies that support small businesses in their transition to a cleaner future.
  • In Hume, Penny Ackery wants to make Hume a centre for development of sustainable technologies, including the mining, designing and manufacturing of goods for the global economy.

Australian Parents for Climate Action : Ensure a just transition for communities and workers that are affected by the transition to a net-zero emissions economy.

Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party Establish an Independent Just Transition Authority for future station closures to develop and implement transition plans. Labor will also require all large generators to give at least 3 years notice of closure.
Centre Alliance Not stated.
The Greens Support mining workers and communities by creating long-term, sustainable industries to assist in the move beyond fossil fuels and to ensure people do not lose work.
Liberal / National Party Under the LNP's Emissions Reductions Plan, jobs will remain in the coal industry because they will work out ways to offset emissions and use renewable energy at power stations.
The New Liberals TNL supports a job guarantee scheme. Coal workers and others who find themselves unemployed as a result of TNL's policy will be employed at a living wage on the government payroll for a year whilst they retrain.
One Nation Party Not stated.
The Reason Party Not stated.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP supports the establishment of a federally funded national job guarantee program in order to ensure full employment. There does not appear to be an explicit policy relating to a just transition for workers affected by the energy transition.
United Australia Party No stated transition plan. Supports regional communities via a proposed 20% tax concession to people living more than 200km from a capital city. UAP also seeks to establish downstream minerals processing in Vic and SA “that aren’t resource rich."
Independents
  • In Boothby, Jo Dyer supports the establishment of a Just Transition Commission to ensure an equitable transition to a decarbonised economy, with a focus on development of clean energy hubs in regional Australia.
  • In Calare, Kate Hook advocates planning for the global transformation away from coal, with investment in a National Transmission Network (NTN) to bring clean energy into the cities, and to expand Calare as a renewable energy zone.

Adaptation and Equity

Australian Parents for Climate Action position : Ensure that Australia is adequately prepared for the level of climate change that will occur given collective global actions / inaction to reduce emissions (resilience / adaptation). Comprehensive climate risk assessments, updated regularly, should underpin policies and investment adaptation and resilience.

  • Emissions reduction target (ERT) of 75% by 2030 (from 2005 levels)
  • Net zero by 2035 - 100% renewable electricity by 2030
Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party

Disaster Ready Fund $200 million/yea rfor disaster prevention and resilience projects: flood levees, sea walls, cyclone shelters, evacuation centres, fire breaks and telecommunications improvements

Urban Rivers and Catchments plan $200 million to fund creation of wetlands to slow water flow and filter stormwater, remove cement walls and return to natural riverbanks, revegetation and tree planting

Great Barrier Reef; $85 million to scale up coral to coast reef resilience and land restoration projects, $15 million for the Coastal Marine Ecosystems Research Centre at CQ University, $63 million to the Reef 2050 program funded to the end of the decade.

Centre Alliance The Centre Alliance wants to strengthen our water security through:
  • Storm water harvesting.
  • Providing federal infrastructure grants to irrigators.
  • Improving practices throughout the Murray-Darling Basin.
The Greens The Greens call for:
  • More fuding for emergency services, the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO so Australia can better predict and respond to climate impacts.
  • Requiring fossil fuel companies pay to clean up their mess, and reinvesting those funds in our infrastructure - from floodproofing stormwater drains, to improving the capacity of our transport systems to handle heat waves.
Liberal / National Party The LNP Government has put in place:
  • A National Climate Resilience and Adaptation Strategy that sets out what the Australian Government will do ... to better anticipate, manage and adapt to the impacts of climate change."
  • A drought relief fund for the agricultural industry (under the Emissions Reduction plan).
  • A plan to use microgrid technology to improve community resilience to natural disasters by providing back up power in regional and remote areas.
The New Liberals Policies on water management and environment acknowledge some resilience challenges, but there does not appear to be a resilience and adaptation policy per se.
One Nation Party One Nation policy is to build new water infrastructure projects, including dams, to legislate the full disclosure of water ownership and ban the sale of water to foreign investors.
The Reason Party Not stated.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP advocates for the human right to a healthy environment to be enshrined in Australian law. Various SAP policies including Planning & Development and Environment touch on resilience and adaptation measures without offering an explicit policy.
United Australia Party No stated adaptation or resilience policies.
Independents
  • In Mackellar, Dr Sophie Scamps supports the development of long-term adaptation strategies to minimise climate impacts, and federal funding for immediate aid to communities suffering through extreme weather disasters.
  • In Page, Hannabeth Luke supports increased funding for emergency services, investment in climate-resilient infrastructure, and support for farmers and local communities to build resilience into their communities, lands and water supply.
  • In Wannon, Alex Dyson seeks to develop a national climate change strategy for agriculture that will support climate resilience and adaptation in farming practices, and financial and other help for farmers adopting practices that reduce carbon emissions.

Australian Parents for Climate Action : Provide equitable access to renewables for disadvantaged families and communities (e.g. solar, EVs, and resilience measures such as home insulation and air conditioning).

Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party The ALP will offer household rebates for solar batteries, and establish a Neighborhood Renewables Program to help social housing tenants benefit from renewable energy.
Centre Alliance Not stated.
The Greens The Greens will encourage households and small businesses to move from fossil fuels to renewable electricity by:
  • Offering financial support to households and small businesses to move from gas to electric alternatives.
  • Offering financial support for residential batteries to maximise their use of renewables.
  • Create a non-profit publicly owned retailer to push down power bills and increase take-up of green energy.
Liberal / National Party The LNP plans to use microgrid technology to help lower emissions, reduce costs, and improve energy reliability for regional and remote communities.
The New Liberals TNL has a Social Security & Social Justice policy that looks to double welfare payments to al recipients. Its EV policy includes support for a car sharing framework, which could make EVs more accessible to lower-income households.
One Nation Party Not stated.
The Reason Party Not stated.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP has a general policy to “better protect and support the most vulnerable Australians, while prioritising fairness and lowering levels of wealth inequality.” There is no explicit policy on equity of access to renewables, beyond improving the energy efficiency information and choices available to all consumers.
United Australia Party Not stated.
Independents
  • In Indi, sitting MP Helen Haines plans to reduce the up-front cost of home batteries by $8,000 through new incentives and no-interest loans. The policy is projected to drive the deployment of 2 million home batteries by the end of the decade.
  • In Curtin, Kate Chaney supports increasing affordability of electric vehicles and home and community batteries, and funding solar and batteries for every school and early childhood centre in Australia.

Australian Parents for Climate Action position : Ensure development on First Nations lands does not proceed without free, prior, and informed consultation and consent of traditional owners.

Party Policy positions
Australian Labor Party Labor plans to double the Indigenous Rangers program and boost funding for Indigenous Protected Areas. This will provide Aboriginal people with further support and autonomy in their traditional land and sea management practices.
Centre Alliance Not stated, although certain aspects of their Aboriginal and Torrest Strait Islanders policy could infer support for greater land rights.
The Greens The Greens' Caring for Country Plan will:
  • Strengthen laws to protect First Nations heritage.
  • Expand Indigenous Protected Areas that are owned, cared for and managed by First Nations people.
  • Triple the funding available for First Nations ranger programs to $767 million.
Liberal / National Party No specific mention of a consultation policy, but there is a general recognition of Aboriginal land rights. The govt is supportive of a new lithium mine in Western Australia, but there is no mention about whether the Aboriginal community were consulted about this mine.
The New Liberals The TNL plans to ensure that Traditional Owners are not overruled on gas fracking and other mining activities, by reviewing and strengthening the operation of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth).
One Nation Party One Nation supports the dismantling of ATSIC and the cessation of Federal funding activities to the Indigenous Land Fund with the return of currently held funds to consolidated revenue.
The Reason Party Reason will strengthen federal legislation that overrides state approved mining permits when destruction of land, waterways, artefacts, and continuous culture is agreed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander land councils or expert witnesses.
Sustainable Aust. Party SAP’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander policy is to “prioritise and improve the health and wellbeing of” First Nations peoples. There is nothing specific about informed consultation and consent.
United Australia Party No stated policies with regard to First Nations rights. Supports “respect for our Constitution and the rule of law, which underpins our democratic society and protects the rights, freedoms and liberties of every Australian citizen.”
Independents
  • In Flinders, Sarah Russell supports the implementation of recommendations of the 2021 Samuel Review, designed to strengthen Australia's environmental protection systems and recognise and respect Indigenous knowledge, customs and interests under national environmental laws.

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Australian Parents for Climate Action meet and work on the lands of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people and respect that sovereignty of those lands was never ceded. We pay respect to Elders, past and present and emerging, and acknowledge the pivotal role that Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people continue to play within the Australian community.