Australia needs to cut emissions in half to do 'fair share'

A NEW global study of climate change targets has found Australia needs to double its current carbon emission cuts to do its "fair share".

However, the man announced on Tuesday as the Turnbull government's new Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, gave no opinion about the government's climate policies.

Dr Finkel will take up the role in December.

He said he wanted a world where electricity production did not involve coal or gas.

He said nuclear energy should also be on the table, but Australia currently lacked the infrastructure and expertise to go down that path.

The study, published on Tuesday in the journal Nature Climate Change, showed Australia needed to cut its emissions by 50-66% below 2010 levels to be "doing its fair share".

Under the policy announced ahead of global climate talks in Paris next month, Australia plans to cut emissions by only 23-25% on 2010 levels by 2030.

The study was based on all nations cutting emissions by an equitable amount to ensure climate change did not increase global temperatures by more than 2 degrees. To reach that target, which most climate scientists say would avoid "dangerous climate change", the world needed to cut emissions to 1990 levels by 2030.

Topics:  carbon emissions energy science

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