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Business calls for govt emissions target

All companies are thinking about reducing their carbon footprint, according to the nation’s top business group.

Business Council of Australia president Tim Reed says it’s an issue being thought about across the board.

“I don’t think I’ve spoken to a business that isn’t thinking about how to reduce their carbon footprint. I don’t think I’ve spoken to a business that doesn’t believe that they’re going to need to,” he told an online forum on Tuesday.

He says businesses are considering lower emissions from a risk management, brand management and competition perspective.

“Everybody is thinking about what their carbon footprint is and how does it feed into those three things,” Mr Reed said.

He’s urged the federal government to adopt the goal of net zero emissions by 2050, so there’s long-term bipartisan support to give businesses certainty.

“There is no doubt that in doing that we would unlock investment,” the former MYOB chief said.

“If people know where you’re headed, it’s amazing the innovation and the creativity and the momentum you can build in getting there.”

The Morrison government has not committed to a 2050 emissions reduction goal, while Labor supports net zero by then.

Mirvac chief Susan Lloyd-Hurwitz says conversations around moving towards a clean economy are now real and genuine, rather than ideological.

She believes the government should attach targets to stimulus, such as making buildings a particular energy rating or preventing a certain amount of waste from going to landfill in return for benefits.

“Through COVID we have all seen that we can take very strong collective action when we are so motivated to do so,” Ms Lloyd-Hurwitz said.

“And maybe we can do that around climate and emissions and sustainability as well.”

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