Australia’s government confirmed Thursday that it refused to allow climate change goals to be written into a proposed free trade deal with Britain, as pressure mounts on it to make more ambitious commitments to cut carbon emissions.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the trade deal under negotiation with Britain was not the document to include U.N. goals to limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial temperatures, and preferably to 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit.)
“It wasn’t a climate agreement; it was a trade agreement,” Morrison said.
“In trade agreements, I deal with trade issues. In climate agreements, I deal with climate issues,” he added.
British ministers had agreed to bow to pressure from Australia to drop binding commitments to the Paris climate change agreement from the bilateral trade deal, Sky News reported citing an email from an unnamed British official sent last month. Read More.