Troy High School
The issue of global climate change has been steadily increasing in the past few years. The Paris Climate Agreement was a global effort to reduce carbon emissions, which has been helpful in its endeavor, in conjunction with the Sustainable Development Goals enacted in 2015.
In Australia, one of the major concerns is the bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef. The increase of carbon emissions means increased oceanic temperatures and therefore a higher pH level, thus meaning shells cannot be made for oceanic crustaceans and coral reefs. In addition, rising global temperatures means longer fire seasons, which can be detrimental to Australian agriculture alongside droughts.
Australia believes both climate change mitigation and climate change adaptation is needed to solve current issues and prevent further damage from occurring. Mitigation may reduce the ultimate extent of climate change and its impacts, but requires global solutions and cooperation, while adaptation can be performed at national and local levels. Mitigation consists of acting to limit the long-term magnitude of climate change, while adaptation refers to dealing with current climate issues.
Australia has an ample amount of renewable energy that can be used in place of current fossil fuels. For example, the Snowy Mountain Scheme is a hydroelectric system that is used. Another example is HydroTasmania. In addition, Australia uses lots of wind power, such as the Cathedral Rocks wind farm in South Australia. This wind farm has 33 wind turbines. Furthermore, Australia supports the use of solar photovoltaics which can be used to generate solar energy. GreenPower is Australia’s government managed accreditation program helping the nation transition to renewable energy above and beyond legislated targets. GreenPower accredited renewable energy is electricity which produces no net greenhouse gas emissions. Australia believes programs like GreenPower can be implemented globally.
The delegation of Australia realizes, however, most nations do not have the financial resources or viable resources to implement such programs and practices. This is why we promote the idea of local adaptation measures including improving education and information awareness. In addition, we promote ideas of conservationism and sustainability when looking at, not only energy practices but all activities which impact global climate change.
- Molly Capelli