While you’re here… help us stay here.

Are you enjoying open access to policy and research published by a broad range of organisations? Please donate today so that we can continue to provide this service.

Attachment Size
Australia: an emissions super-power 3.01 MB

New government figures show that the greenhouse gas emissions from Australia’s exported fossil fuels have increased 4.4% between 2018 to 2019 (OCE, 2020).

Not only is Australia a laggard in meeting its UN Paris emission reduction targets, it is now the world’s largest exporter of coal and gas. In fact, the emissions from Australia’s exported fossil fuels are now greater than Germany’s domestic emissions (Hein, Peter & Graichen, 2020).

Despite federal government claims that our national emissions have only a minimal impact on the global climate, Australia is, in fact, a major contributor to global climate change. The massive emissions that result from our fossil fuel exports are not counted in Australia’s national carbon budget under our UN climate obligations, nor do we take responsibility for the impact these emissions are having globally.

Key facts:

  • Australia’s exported emissions have increased 4.4% between 2018 and 2019.
  • In 2019, the emissions from Australian fossil fuel exports were 1.4 times greater than Germany’s domestic emissions.
  • In 2019 Australia’s exported emissions were 1.4 times greater than all the CO2 emissions produced by the 2019/2020 summer bushfires.
  • Every Australian is paying $1,832 per year for fossil fuel subsidies, compared to the one-off payment of around $78 for bushfire relief.
Publication Details
Access Rights Type: