Australia wants to use carbon credits assigned to developed economies under the Kyoto Protocol, a precursor climate accord, to meet its greenhouse gas targets under the Paris accord. Britain, Germany, New Zealand and others have ruled out such an approach, saying it undermines the spirit of the Paris deal.
Labor is yet to decide on the emissions reduction target it will take to the next election, and has refused to back its previous target of slashing emissions by 45 per cent by 2020.
Mr Albanese said “international action” was needed to tackle climate change and that “Australia alone cannot deal with it”.
He also attacked Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who is preparing to fly home from Hawaii after cutting his family holiday short following the death of two firefighters, for his handling of the disaster.
“The problem with this government is that it does not seem to be prepared to acknowledge that this is not business as usual”, he said.
Asked if he endorsed the climate protests including the crowd moved on by police, with some protesters arrested, outside Mr Morrison’s residence in Kirribilli on Friday, Mr Albanese said he supported “peaceful protest” as a way for people to “put forward their view”.
“People are worried about climate change and they are right to be,” he said.
Mr Albanese said he would be prepared to put additional federal funding into emergency management and fire fighting if he became prime minister.
ANU Climate Change Institute director Mark Howden said the Australian public’s expectation of government action to address man-made climate change and its consequences was not being met.
“The government needs to put in place a price on carbon,” Professor Howden said.
“Every economist I speak to says it’s the most efficient and effective way to lower emissions and in particular look at things that are going to generate a win-win.”
He said this would enable the creation of new, high-tech industries and job opportunities that “take us forwards rather than backwards”.