The Climate and Recovery Initiative brings together prominent leaders from government, business and civil society to identify the best ideas for aligning Australia’s economic recovery with a transition towards a net zero emissions economy, and to get them into the right hands.

The Initiative is coordinated by the Centre for Policy Development (CPD) and Climateworks Australia, with a steering group that includes the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group), the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU), and Pollination. 

The Initiative was formed in recognition that Australia faces two generation-defining challenges: recovering from the coronavirus pandemic and responding to climate change. These challenges are intertwined. Investments in climate resilience and net zero ambition today can turbocharge Australia’s recovery and position the country for stronger and more sustainable economic growth in the years ahead. The group is focused on both job-creating stimulus opportunities and broader policy changes that could sustain national collaboration on systemic risks like climate change.

Climateworks Australia CEO Anna Skarbek said that aligning Australia’s economic recovery with a trajectory to net zero emissions will require ambition and cross-sector collaboration, which is exactly what the Initiative is about.

“Australia can achieve net zero emissions by 2050. To do so, we must invest in decarbonisation across all sectors of the economy and in all states and territories. Smart investments today can lay the foundation for long-term growth and prosperity.”

“Better coordination of efforts between the Commonwealth, the states and the private sector can drive large-scale investment, job creation and economic growth while lowering economy-wide emissions.”

Anna Skarbek

Working together since May 2020, the group has hosted two large stakeholder roundtables, convening senior officials from the Commonwealth and state governments alongside leaders from industry, unions, community organisations, think tanks and academia. Participants include representatives from the Business Council of Australia, AiGroup, ACTU, the Investor Group on Climate Change, the Australian Council of Social Services, the Reserve Bank of Australia, and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA).

The Climate and Recovery Initiative will continue for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021, with key windows including the formation of the 2021-22 Federal Budget and the lead up to COP26 in November 2021.

You can find the materials from the roundtables via the Centre for Policy Development site.