Australia doesn’t care to break its coal habit in the face of climate change

Australia doesn’t care to break its coal habit in the face of climate change
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Enlarge / Coking coal. (credit: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Earlier this week, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a dire warning about climate change: unless governments of the world coordinate to implement multiple long-term changes, we risk overshooting the 2°C warming scenario that countries strived to target in the Paris Agreement. This would lead to ecosystem damage, increasingly dramatic heat waves and previously-irregular weather patterns in different regions, and subsequent health impacts for humans.

Retiring coal-fired power plants is a significant action that could limit our race toward an unstable future. But Australia’s officials don’t quite care. According to The Guardian, the country’s deputy prime minister, Michael McCormack, said that Australia would “‘absolutely’ continue to use and exploit its coal reserves, despite the IPCC’s dire warnings the world has just 12 years to avoid climate-change catastrophe.”

McCormack also reportedly said that Australia would not change its coal policies “just because somebody might suggest that some sort of report is the way we need to follow and everything that we should do.”

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