102 AUSTRALIAN BUSINESSES CALL FOR AUSTRALIA TO BECOME A RENEWABLE ENERGY SUPERPOWER
102 businesses including Atlassian, Unilever, Mirvac, Australian Ethical and more have joined WWF-Australia in calling on our state and federal governments to invest in a renewable future.
“Australia has all of the resources to become a leading exporter of renewables by 2030. With more support from our governments, we could produce enough clean, affordable energy to power our nation, plus have plenty left over to sell to our neighbours,” said Nicky Ison, Energy Transition Manager at WWF-Australia. “For Australian businesses, this would mean creating hundreds of thousands and jobs and providing a significant boost to our economy. But we must act fast. If we don’t, we risk squandering a once-in-a-generation opportunity.”
The 102 businesses represent tens of thousands of employees across a variety of sectors and industries, from technology, to finance, construction, property development, and renewable energy. The significant corporate backing for WWF’s campaign shows a groundswell of support and desire from the business community for Australia to step up and lead the way in bringing clean energy solutions to the world.
The partners are participating in the campaign by being in a double-page advertising spread in a major newspaper as well as dedicating social media channels to share the call. Specifically, the partners are calling for Australian governments to:
1. Commit to allocating at least 1% of GDP to a clean recovery in the May budget
2. Develop a bold renewable export plan that puts us on the path to 700% renewable energy capacity
3. Create renewable energy industrial precincts that enable industry to be powered by renewables and clean heat
4. Deliver a fairer transition to ensure First Nations, low-income households, workers and regional communities all benefit from the renewables race.
Nicky Sparshott, CEO of Unilever Australia and New Zealand said, “The two biggest threats the world currently faces are climate change and social inequality – threats that are deeply intertwined. Climate change is not only an environmental crisis but one which will impact the lives and livelihoods of millions of people. Urgent action is needed now. We need to transition away from high carbon pathways and ensure public spending aligns with the most ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement - limiting global warming to a maximum of 1.5ºC and reaching net-zero emissions by 2050 at the latest. That’s why we’re joining WWF-Australia in calling for our Government to accelerate Australia’s renewable energy capacity. Research shows this would create new future-fit industries, grow existing sectors, create new jobs and galvanise a prosperous future for Australia.”
Jessica Hyman, Head of Strategy & Sustainability at Atlassian said, "Climate change poses an existential threat — not just to our environment, but to our health, our communities, and our economic well-being. If we get renewable energy right, not only will we create a more resilient planet, we have the opportunity to create the jobs of the future."
Sarah Clarke, Group General Manager, Sustainability, at Mirvac said, “Transitioning to renewable energy is a key part of our plan to be net positive carbon by 2030. Our entire retail portfolio issupplied by renewable electricity, as is 90 per cent of our office portfolio, and this has reduced our overall carbon footprint by 80 per cent as of 1 January this year. We are proud to support Australia’s transition to a renewable future.”
WWF-Australia’s Renewables Nation Campaign has seen significant successes, including stimulus measures being included in the 2020 October Federal Budget, such as the Modern Manufacturing Initiative, support for local solar projects and hydrogen.
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“We have seen encouraging movement from state and federal governments to help Australia seize the opportunity of becoming a renewable export superpower, but there is so much more to do. It is excellent to see so many Australian businesses recognise the opportunity and join us in calling for more action,” Ms. Ison concluded