Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has described Scott Morrison as a “C-grade Boris Johnson” and warned world leaders at the COP26 conference will see through his plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.
Under Mr Morrison’s plan announced on Tuesday, more than $20bn will be invested in “low emissions technologies”, but the modelling will not be released until later.
Mr Morrison will soon travel to Glasgow for the United Nations Climate Change Conference, but Mr Rudd warned the Prime Minister would likely face some criticism from other leaders.
“I think, for example, you could rely upon the European Union and probably the United States to finger Morrison for, frankly, this duplicitous,” he told the Democracy Sausage podcast.
“The 2050 carbon neutrality debate is a done deal. The real action is what governments are now committing to by way of their renewed, redefined, near-term carbon reduction targets for this decade 2020 through until 2030.
“That’s where the rubber hits the road … most governments are in the business of advancing reductions of around about 50 per cent against 2005 levels of their current greenhouse gas emissions.
“That’s certainly where the Americans have gone, that’s where most of the other majors have gone … so right now, we are a shag on a rock in terms of 2030.
“The illusion being created … is somehow there’s been a Damascus Road conversion and there’ll be garlands of flowers thrown out on the path as Morrison makes his way to the conference centre in Glasgow — nothing could be further from the truth.”
Mr Rudd also hit out at the Nationals, describing the party as “quite corrupt”.
“They’ve ceased to be a party for anything or anybody other than themselves,” he said.
In a wide-ranging interview, Mr Rudd also spoke about Australia’s nuclear-powered submarine deal with the UK and US, scrapping its previous arrangement with France.
“The net consequence of what’s happened, I think is … it’s not just alienating the French, but you’ve actually turned the French into a hostile agent against Australian interests regionally and globally,” Mr Rudd said.
“(Also), you’ve established a reputation sovereignly for Australia as a country which doesn’t honour its contracts — not good.
“I think most critically … we have now at present the illusion of nuclear-powered subs arriving in this country sometime in 2030s, possibly not until the 2040s, and us being left strategically naked on the way through.
“I find that the most absolutely irresponsible element of this entire equation … I wonder where the grown ups in the room have been during these discussions.”