26 September 2023

NSW Environment stands up to beat the climate

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The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) is putting its draft climate change policy and action plan to the test, inviting public feedback on its capacity to protect the community and environment from the impacts of the planet’s climate change threats.

Chief Executive of the EPA, Tony Chappel said the draft EPA Climate Change Policy and Climate Change Action Plan 2022–25 proposed a set of actions designed to achieve a 50 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2030, ensure net zero emissions by 2050, and improve resilience to climate change impacts.

“Over the past few years we have seen first-hand just how destructive the impacts of climate change are becoming, not only for our environment, but for NSW communities too,” Mr Chappel said.

“We know the EPA has a critical role to play in achieving the NSW Government’s net-zero targets and responding to the increasing threat of climate change induced weather events,” he said.

“Equally, acting on climate presents major economic opportunities for NSW in new industries such as clean energy, hydrogen, green metals, circular manufacturing, natural capital and regenerative agriculture.”

Mr Chappel said the draft Policy sent a clear signal to regulated industries that the EPA would be working with them to support and drive cost-effective decarbonisation while implementing adaptation initiatives that would build resilience to climate change risks.

He said the draft Action Plan proposed a staged approach that ensured the EPA’s actions were deliberate, well informed and complemented Government and industry activities on climate change.

“These actions will support industry and allow reasonable time for businesses to plan for and meet any new targets or requirements,” he said.

He said actions would include working with Government, industry and experts to improve the evidence base on climate change; partnering with Government Agencies to address climate change during the planning and assessment process for activities the EPA regulated; and establishing cost-effective emission reduction targets for key industry sectors.

The EPA’s 32-page draft Policy can be accessed at this PS News link and its 66-page draft Action Plan at this link.

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