Vic Opposition promises emissions reduction target

The Victorian Labor Opposition has pledged to introduce an
emissions reduction into the state if it wins government on Saturday.

The ABC reports that the previous Labor Government introduced
a target in 2006 which was cut back following the extension of the Federal Government’s
target.

“When we were last in Government we put in place an
emissions reductions target to reduce emissions and contribute to reducing the
risk of climate change in Victoria,” Labor environment spokeswoman Lisa
Neville said.

“So we’ll go through a process with the Victorian
community again to put in place a program that will actually reduce
emissions.”

As The Age reports, the Opposition policy is vague. It merely
promises “to commit to an achievable carbon emissions reduction
target”, without mentioning any figures.

Victorian Greens leader Greg Barber wasn’t happy with Labor’s environment policy.

“The ‘policy’ contains nothing on coal, nothing on coal
seam gas, nothing on forest logging and nothing on a Victorian Renewable Energy
Target,” he said.

Victorian Environment Minister Ryan Smith attacked the
proposed return to a state-based emissions reduction target.

“An emissions target would cost Victorians and we have
not yet seen any costings on any of Labor’s policies and certainly not this
one,” he said.

“An emissions target in Victoria would mean that
Victorians were under more pressure to achieve a target over and above that
which has been set by the Federal Government.”

According to Neville, if elected, Labor will also use planning laws
to encourage the establishment of renewable energy projects such as wind farms;
and set up a $20 million fund to encourage investment in renewables.