A recent climate report found in order to protect Australians from the impact of extreme weather, cheap and efficient renewable energy needed to be embraced.
As part of its Angry Summer report, the Climate Council attributed the country’s current, prolonged heatwave to climate change, after more than 205 records were broken during summer.
According to the authors of the report, which includes Professor Will Steffen, the inaugural director of the Australian National University’s Climate Change Institute, hot days and heat waves will become the new norm, with further extreme heat on the way if a move towards a reduction in greenhouse and gas emissions isn’t achieved worldwide.
Despite Australia’s commitment to decrease its production of greenhouse gas emissions, our emissions rose by 0.8 per cent last year.
The heatwave has highlighted the vulnerability of Australia’s energy systems, increasing stress on ageing energy infrastructure and contributing to the sudden closures of coal-powered energy stations in South Australia and Victoria this year.
‘‘Australia needs to transition rapidly to cheap, clean, renewable energy to reduce our emissions,’’ the report read.
‘‘The Angry Summer of 2016-17 is indicative of a super-charged extreme weather fuelled primarily by the burning of coal, oil and gas.
‘‘We are at a critical juncture. The only viable option to protect Australians is to join the global effort in transitioning to renewables, improving energy efficiency and ramping up other zero-emission climate solutions.’’