Nov 1, 2021 2:53 PM EDT

Australia’s leader says technology will provide solutions to climate change

GLASGOW, Scotland — Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has insisted that curbing climate change must not come at a high cost to people and businesses, saying technology will provide solutions to the climate crisis.

Australia has pledged to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, and at the COP26 climate conference on Monday, Morrison said by 2030 Australia’s emissions will be 35 percent below 2005 levels. That is more than Australia’s commitment, made in Paris six years ago, but still weaker than many other wealthy nations. The United States has committed to reductions of between 50 percent and 52 percent below 2005 levels.

Morrison said “technology will have the answers to a decarbonized economy, particularly over time — and achieve it in a way that does not deny our citizens, especially in developing economies, their livelihoods or the opportunity for a better quality of life.”

The Australian leader said “raising the cost of energy just impacts on those who can afford it least” and said “driving down the cost of technology” would be key to Australia hitting its net-zero target.