In 2019, at the sixth Australasian Emissions Reduction Summit, ClimateWorks CEO Anna Skarbek shared lessons from ten years of climate action, and how these can be applied to the next decade. She also delved into the latest research from ClimateWorks.

“Five years ago, ClimateWorks demonstrated that Australia, amongst most countries in the world, can achieve net zero emissions within the 2050 deadline for the 2 degree carbon budget. We are now updating that research, and I will share the findings with you today, but the spoiler alert is that we still can”. 

In 2014, as part of the global 2050 Deep Decarbonisation Pathways Project, ClimateWorks and the Australian National University published Pathways to deep decarbonisation by 2050: How Australia can prosper in a low carbon world. The research definitely showed that Australia could reach net zero by 2050, modelling multiple 2 degree scenarios. ClimateWork’s follow up to this landmark work, Decarbonisation futures: Solutions, actions and benchmarks for a net zero emissions Australia was released in 2020. Progress in technology since 2014 meant that a 1.5 degree scenario was included in the new research.

“The significance of 1.5 degree cap of warming means the challenge is harder. But technologies are demonstrating exponential progress. While policy has stalled or been reversed, the finance sector and consumers are shifting.”

Anna Skarbek


Watch the full keynote on vimeo. Registrations for the 2020 Summit are open now.