Leaders of a business climate club say they are avoiding “small party politics” and are moving forward with the work of decarbonising the economy.
“We’re trying to keep politics out of it and just move on and do what we can,” said CSIRO chairman David Thodey, co-chair of the Climate Leaders Coalition Group.
The biggest climate issue for Australia is how to get small and medium-sized businesses on board, he told the audience at an online event hosted by the Committee on Economic Development in Australia on Wednesday.
“I think governments can play a crucial role here, and I think they need to be at the table, set policies and encourage everyone to move,” he said.
“I do not intend to buy into their petty party politics because there is nothing rational in it.”
Corporate governance and peer pressure will make a difference, Mr Thodey said.
“I do not want irrational arguments or discussions about technological roadmaps and things like this that are only part of the solution.”
But state governments have “wonderful” initiatives and continue to step up to the net zero and 2030 targets, he said.
“We want to encourage and work with anyone who wants to make a difference.”
CLC is a group of 33 Australian companies that account for just over a fifth of the country’s current greenhouse gas emissions under current global accounting rules.
AGL, BHP, Fortescue Metals, Rio Tinto, Santos and Wesfarmers are among its members.
CLC co-chair John Lydon, the former managing partner of consulting giant McKinsey Australia, recently returned from the Glasgow climate conference and said he was optimistic about business in terms of meeting the emission reduction challenge.
He said banks and other large corporations should help customers decarbonize and adapt to new rules.
“This is about businesses that reduce our emissions in our backyard and help each other.”
Sir. Lydon said climate activists, financiers and business leaders were increasingly in line.
“Let’s not argue about technology and taxes that are already an effective tax on business when it comes to financing their investments,” he said.
Australian Associated Press