United States Presidential Election

9 November 2020

On behalf of Centre Alliance I would like to congratulate President-elect Biden on his success in last week's election. When he assumes office in January, there will very much be an enormous weight of expectations on his shoulders. I don't envy him having that responsibility, particularly given the divisive nature of the previous president. But I believe America and the world are stronger when American leadership reflects the democratic, optimistic nature of the American people. I hope the new president fulfils these ambitions. I particularly welcome his pledges on climate change and commitment to rejoin the Paris Agreement. American leadership on climate change is absolutely essential. Few other countries or institutions have the ability or the influence to secure global commitments.

Global commitments are a necessary first step in ensuring policies are adopted to prevent climate change becoming a catastrophe. We've seen examples of that in Australia over the last six to nine months. Australia is one country that can and must do more. Recent natural disasters have demonstrated the impacts climate change can have on our country. They are a reminder of the need for action and that we must raise the level of our ambitions—and we must do it soon. It's been 13 years since former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd declared climate change the 'great moral challenge of our time' and yet we still haven't done what countries like Britain, Canada, New Zealand and many others have done and taken serious action. I continue to hope our government accept this reality and lets it inform their policies, and I hope that the new president's election provides the catalyst for change both here and abroad.

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