The government clearly has underestimated the urgency of the need to cut carbon emissions. Evidence of this comes in the announcement today from Prime Minister Kevin Rudd that Australia would commit to reduce its emissions by 2020 by just 5% compared with 2000 levels.
After years of waiting now we finally have total clarity that we cannot rely on our government to drive the kind of carbon reductions the science says we urgently need.
A door has been closed. And whilst its hard to remain up-beat, lets consider the alternatives that will result in Australia significantly reducing its emissions. Alternatives such as:
- Voluntary action. My experience has been that individuals and companies who seriously try to reduce their carbon emissions can save much more than 5%, probably closer to 50%. It depends on their starting point and the type of industry they are in. But in general, if you have strong leadership commitment you can achieve big savings.
- Sexy carbon friendly technologies that are so cost effective they are a “no brainer”. Solar panels for example are very sexy. But expensive. Engineering ingenuity could solve this.
- The aggressive marketing of energy efficient technologies. Energy efficiency isn’t exciting, but it is cost effective. My business is energy efficiency. Any advice on making efficiency sexy and wildly popular would be welcome.