New Victorian Climate Laws set mandate for whole of government action on climate

23 February 2017

Victoria will soon have brand new climate laws thanks to the Victorian Parliament passing the Victorian Climate Change Bill today. We congratulate the Andrews Government on this important step that makes Victoria a leader on climate action. Now, it is critical that all Victorian Ministers and government agencies get to work immediately to use the powers and mandate they have been given to substantially reduce Victoria’s emissions.

“The Climate Change Act is a clear statement of intent that Victoria will act on climate – however the real work must now begin,” stated Nicola Rivers, Director of Advocacy and Research at Environmental Justice Australia.

“The government’s priority must be to develop its sector pledges to reduce emissions in the critical areas of energy generation and land use, and to ensure as many decision-makers as possible are required to consider climate change when making key decisions.”

While the Act could have been stronger in many respects, it does provide a strong platform for government action including emission reduction targets, requirements for decision-makers across different areas of government to consider climate change, and focused work to reduce emissions in key sectors.

“We are pleased the Government adopted many of the recommendations we made for the Act and we look forward to working with the Government to ensure these laws achieve climate justice for communities and the environment,” Ms Rivers stated.

Although Liberal and National party members voted against the Bill in both houses, the Bill still passed thanks to the support of the Greens and cross benchers Fiona Patten MLC and James Purcell MLC.

Interviews:

Nicola Rivers, Lawyer, Director of Advocacy and Research 0410 668 755

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