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Greens call for Labor to follow US and UK on climate pledges

Anthony Albanese should step in line with the likes of US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnston if Labor comes into power, according to a new Greens push

Greens Leader Adam Bandt made it clear on Thursday his party would favour Labor over the Liberals in a balance of power, but he wants to see more action on the environment if a minority parliament does eventuate.

He said they would push Labor to join the “Powering Past Coal Alliance” (PPCA), which was established by Mr Johnston and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, if they form government.

The PPCA is a group of 48 countries as well as businesses and organisations from around the world who are working to advance the transition from coal power to clean energy.

“The Greens will use our power in the next parliament to kick the Liberals out and push the next government to join the Powering Past Coal Alliance,” Mr Bandt said.

“Joining the PPCA will be the entry ticket for the next global climate summit in Cairo as well as hosting any future summit here in Australia. We support Labor’s call to host a climate summit here, but if Labor keeps backing new coal mines, the world won’t let it happen.”

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Mr Bandt also expressed his desire for a Labor government to join the US and European Union’s “Global Methane Pledge”, an agreement to cut global methane emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.

112 countries have joined the pledge, which is aimed at strengthening global action on climate change and growing related technical and policy work.

“Australia should sign onto that, that would be a big move around the world,” Mr Bandt said.

It comes after Mr Albanese promised on Wednesday to get Australia out of the “naughty corner” on climate change in diplomatic relations with other countries.

“We are in the naughty corner at UN Framework Convention on Climate Change conferences. That’s the truth,” he said.

“One of the ways that we increase our standing in the region, and in particular in the Pacific, is by taking climate change seriously.

“The Biden Administration and Australia, I think, will have a strengthened relationship in our common view about climate change and the opportunity that it represents.”

Election With Anthony Albanese
Camera IconLabor leader Anthony Albanese speaking on climate change at the National Press Club on Wednesday. Sam Ruttyn Credit: News Corp Australia

Mr Bandt acknowledged that while Australia is not a big international political power, it is a “critical player” on climate change because of its reputation as a fossil fuel exporter and carbon footprint.

“Even though we’re a small player diplomatically speaking, we’re a big player in the climate stakes,” he said.

This desire for Australia to join these international climate pledges is accompanied by a push from the Greens to stop new coal and gas projects.

“We’ve got to stop making the problem worse,” Mr Bandt said.

“Liberal and Labor want to open up 114 new coal and gas projects. The Greens will kick the Liberals out and push Labor to adopt a comprehensive plan to power past coal and gas, including by joining the worldwide movement of countries striving to do the same.”

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