New unit established to steer transport industry down ‘net zero’ road

A new unit has been established in the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communication and the Arts, to help the industry achieve ‘net zero’ emissions and improve the resilience of transport networks and supply chains.

The Net Zero Unit is to be led by Ian Porter, head of program delivery at Climateworks Centre, a not-for-profit founded by Monash University and the Myer Foundation to bridge the gap between research and climate action.

Ian Porter.

According to a media release from Transport Minister Catherine King’s office, Porter brings “significant experience” in climate change, energy and sustainability policy, as well as working across government, public service, consulting and the not-for-profit sector.

The unit’s formation is part of the government’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 43 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

The unit will help advance the government’s emissions commitments by connecting government agencies, industry and climate experts to translate the latest research into action, while ensuring climate expertise is embedded into policies and investments.

“Achieving our government’s emissions reduction targets on the path to net zero by 2050 will require concerted action to drive emissions lower across the transport sector,” said King.

“We are already helping to achieve this by increasing the uptake of electric vehicles, considering fuel efficiency standards, improving consumer information, promoting alternative aviation fuels and other technologies, and engaging with international partners to reduce shipping emissions.”

In response to the announcement from King today, the Australian Trucking Association told Big Rigs that its position is that the following four initiatives must be supported by government:

  • Reforms to Australian Design Rules, including increased width and mass
  • A zero emission truck purchase price incentive
  • Investment in electric recharging and hydrogen refuelling infrastructure for trucks
  • National reform on road user charging.

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