Australian Greens Senator and Spokesperson for International Development, Dr Mehreen Faruqi, has said that climate justice must be central to Australia’s development assistance program following reports that the Foreign Minister, Senator Marise Payne, received the climate change strategy six months ago but is yet to release it.
Senator Faruqi said:
“Climate change is an existential threat to our neighbours and must be front and centre of our foreign aid program. The poorest, who contribute the least to climate change, are often the hardest hit by rising sea levels, extreme weather events and environmental damage.
“Given our dirty hands in producing climate changing emissions, we have a special responsibility to deliver climate justice.
“I urge Senator Payne to urgently release the climate strategy and provide funding to support action on climate change, particularly for our neighbours in the Pacific and South-East Asia.
“The reality is Australia exports climate change. Once our coal exports are counted, we are the world’s sixth largest contributor to climate change. Every tonne of coal we ship out brings us and our neighbours one step closer to the climate precipice,” she concluded.