CLIMATE CHANGE

With the Prime Minister attending the upcoming Glasgow climate change summit, I want to take some time to share the Marshall Liberal government's clear path for responding to climate change by building a strong climate smart future. In December 2019, the government released our direction for Climate Smart South Australia, with the goal of net zero emissions by 2050. At the opening of the 2020 parliament, we then set an interim goal to reduce emissions by at least 50 per cent by 2030.

Addressing climate change takes government leadership, with the capacity to deliver real action through an intentional focus on tangible outcomes and a commitment to engaging with business and the market. Our action plan for climate change includes our government understanding that adapting to climate change and developing low emissions industries will be key to South Australia's economic recovery and growth.

In December 2020, we released our most powerful vision for climate action of any South Australian government in history. The Climate Change Action Plan 2021-2025 provides an ambitious practical approach to dealing with climate change, building a strong green economy and further reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The plan includes 68 actions across seven focus areas, those being clean energy transformation; climate smart economy; climate smart agriculture, landscapes and habitats; low emissions transport; climate smart built and urban environments; resilient communities; and government leading by example.

The action plan was developed with input and advice from renowned climate change expert Professor Ross Garnaut. The plan shows that we could achieve a level of renewable energy that is more than five times the current local grid demand by 2050. Examples of how the Marshall Liberal government is already tackling climate change include our clean energy transformation. South Australia is well on the way to achieving 100 per cent net renewable energy generation by the 2030s, with around 60 per cent of electricity generation coming from renewable sources in 2020.

We have the Project EnergyConnect interconnector, and South Australia is also well on the way to becoming a net renewable electricity exporter to New South Wales and Victoria through a $2.3 billion interconnector being built. This will deliver cheaper, cleaner electricity and thousands of jobs. We also have clean, green hydrogen. Our Hydrogen Action Plan provides 20 actions across five key areas to help scale up hydrogen production for export and domestic consumption. The latest budget includes $47 million over four years for the upgrade of the Port Bonython Jetty to support hydrogen and ammonia export.

We have our solar and battery expansion. The latest budget also commits an additional $10 million towards a home battery scheme. We have our low emissions transport. Our Electric Vehicle Action Plan included government investment in a statewide electric vehicle charging network. This included $18.3 million over three years for electric vehicles charging infrastructure. The $2 million Greener Neighbourhoods Grants Program provides funding for councils to improve the livability of our city through increased greening, reduced urban heat and improved natural environment.

The government is leading by example. We have committed $60 million over two years for capital upgrades to government buildings to improve energy efficiency. I believe we need to protect our environment. In South Australia, we have been pioneers in many environmental initiatives, being the first state to introduce the container deposit scheme for recycled bottles and cans, to recently being the only state to introduce legislation to phase out single-use plastics. We have introduced renewable energy systems, such as solar, and made them widespread in our state. All these initiatives will contribute to tackling the causes of climate change.

It is clear to see that the Marshall Liberal government has a clear and strong plan to respond to climate change by building a strong climate smart future.