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There can be no new coal, oil or gas projects if the global energy sector is to reach net zero emissions by 2050 and help avoid catastrophic climate change, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has shown in a new report. 

IEA executive director, Fatih Birol, said Australia had an obligation to reach net zero emissions earlier than 2050, and should phase out coal-fired power stations by 2030.

IEA’s Net Zero by 2050: A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector outlines how the transition to net zero can create 14 million new jobs by 2030, almost three times more than the jobs that will be lost as fossil fuels decline.

Climate Council head of research Simon Bradshaw said the IEA report adds to a growing body of evidence that Australia’s gas-fired recovery is unnecessary and dangerous.

“The fact that even the traditionally conservative IEA is calling for an immediate end to fossil fuel expansion is yet another nail in the coffin for fossil fuels, the biggest drivers of dangerous climate change,” Bradshaw said.

“Projects under consideration right now, like the Narrabri and Scarborough gas projects, cannot go ahead.

“Instead of spending public money on gas, which will increase electricity prices and worsen climate change, Australia can and should be working towards net zero emissions by 2035, and capitalising on the benefits of leading the global transition to renewables.”

The Climate Council recently set new science-based targets for Australia which includes reducing emissions by 75 per cent by 2030 levels, and to reach net zero emissions by 2035.

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