Our scientific community has warned us that unless we boost our capabilities and our coordination of climate science, we will not be able to meet our international obligations.
Australia should never again be faced with the threat of the CSIRO being forced to exit the field of climate science, or sacking hundreds of climate scientists, as happened under the Liberals in 2016.
Climate variability and change across seasons and decades has profound consequences for primary industries, coastal and water infrastructure, the generation and delivery of energy, and transport systems in Australia and throughout the world.
Science improves our ability to understand and make projections of climate change. It has the potential to reduce climate-related impacts and capitalise on potential opportunities associated with these changes. In this way, the impact of climate science research is felt in every corner of society.
Labor has listened to the advice provided in the Academy of Science Review of Climate Science Capability, which was released in 2017 and stated:
There are weaknesses in coordination and resourcing arrangements for Australian climate science that create avoidable inefficiency. Substantial gains could be realised by measures to improve coordination arrangements….
Academy of Science Review of Climate Science Capability, Page 5
The Liberals have treated Australian’s climate scientists with contempt and distain over the past six years while also reducing spending on science, research and innovation by 10 per cent over the past five years, a cut of $1.1 billion.
A Shorten Labor Government will develop a national climate science capability plan with the assistance of a National Scientific Expert Panel and the National Climate Science Advisory Committee.
Labor will commit $10 million over four years to boost the capabilities of the CSIRO Climate Centre. This investment will directly boost the CSIRO climate science capabilities in Hobart, Aspendale (Melbourne) and Black Mountain (Canberra), giving the CSIRO the ability to begin to address critical gaps and skills shortages in climate science.
The additional funding will allow the CSIRO to hire new staff to begin addressing critical gaps in climate science identified by the experts.
This election is a choice between Labor’s plans for more jobs in science and research, or the Liberals’ cuts and plans to deliver bigger tax loopholes for the top end of town.
After six years of Liberal cuts and chaos, our united Labor team is ready to deliver a fair go for all Australians.
We will pay for it by making multinationals pay their fair share and closing tax loopholes used by the top end of town.