The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) has welcomed the strong focus on infrastructure spending in the latest federal budget delivered by the Morrison Government. However, it has expressed disappointment at the lack of bold new initiatives supporting emissions reductions.
According to GBCA head of public affairs and membership, Jonathan Cartledge, strong infrastructure investment is the backbone of healthy, resilient and high-functioning towns and cities. Therefore, the organisation welcomes the focus on reducing congestion, connecting regional centres and promoting fast rail.
However, it is also imperative to ensure that these investments maximise their value through the creation of more productive, liveable and sustainable communities that deliver a better standard of living for all Australians in the years ahead.
“Given the paramount importance of leveraging our cities and regions to deal with the challenges of population growth and climate change, we would have liked to see additional funds earmarked for City Deals, and sooner, but look forward to supporting the implementation of those already announced," says Cartledge.
GBCA has duly noted the allocation of $79.2 million over six years for new energy efficiency measures by the Government in the budget.
“While improving the energy efficiency of our appliances is important, the opportunity to realise significant savings through support for a low emissions built environment will help ease the transition to a low carbon future across the economy," says Carteledge.
“Australian industry leads the world in delivering net zero carbon buildings. We urge Government to match industry leadership with more ambitious policy that rewards broader action.
“With the built environment accounting for a quarter of Australia’s emissions, it is disappointing that the Government has missed a further opportunity to deliver a low emissions future.”
Cartledge has also commended the Opposition for displaying strong leadership on climate policy.