Welcome to Australian Local Government Association's climate change policy and research area. Climate change is one of ALGA's top 5 priority policy issues. Local government understands that effective mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to the impacts of climate change will transform the Australian economy, environment and society as a whole. These changes present challenges and opportunities for Australian business, communities and individuals. Local government in Australia is committed to playing its role in meeting these challenges and opportunities.
ALGA's position on climate change is based on the following principles:
- ALGA recognises the importance of climate change, the impact of human activity on the composition of the global atmosphere and the urgent need to mitigate the production of greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change that cannot be avoided.
- ALGA recognises the importance of evidence based policy making. Policies, strategies and actions addressing climate change need to be based on the best available science while recognising the need for sufficient flexibility to adapt as scientific knowledge improves.
- Local government throughout Australia is an instrumental level of government in implementation and mitigation activities at the local and community level. However the capacity and level of resources of local governments to address climate change vary and additional funding assistance will be required to ensure that ‘public good’ community assets are managed effectively.
- In regards to mitigation, ALGA supports a price on carbon, in particular a market based approach to drive reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. ALGA will work with the Australian Government on the design of an effective scheme that is practical and does not have unintended consequences for local communities.
- ALGA acknowledges that there will be significant impacts resulting from climate change cannot be avoided. Scientific evidence is clear that adaptation activities need to be undertaken now both as an investment in the future of communities and to protect valuable infrastructure. ALGA is committed to support local government’s role in adaptation and ensuring that role is recognised in future Australian Government programs.
- Noting that transformation to a low carbon economy will have significant impacts on businesses, communities and individuals ALGA supports appropriate adjustment policies and strategies to facilitate this change.
ALGA is working with state and territory local government association on the following policy priorities:
- Improved access to information, scalable data to inform council policy development, planning and community engagement.
- legal liability
- coastal adaptation
- inter-governmental collaboration on climate change and policy alignment on climate change
ALGA has a vital interest in climate change policy. ALGA works closely with the Australian Government Departments and State Ministers and officials on major initiatives through the Council of Australian Government (COAG) and other relevant intergovernmental forums. Further details of the work of COAG can be found at www.coag.gov.au
With assistance from the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency (DCCEE), ALGA engaged respected law firm Baker & Mackenzie to under take an examination of the risks related to legal action arising from the effects of climate change on councils.
Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) submission on the Carbon Farming Initiative urges for the expansion and security of the program going forward to encourage greater reductions in carbon emissions.
Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) submission on the carbon price mechanism supports the introduction of a carbon price, but stresses where alternative programs would promote greater reductions at less direct cost.
CARBON PRICE AND LANDFILL NATIONAL FORUM