Hunt hits back at plan to offset emissions by 2050

ENVIRONMENT Minister Greg Hunt has hit out at Labor's plan to offset all Australia's carbon emissions by 2050, dubbing it little more than "a plan to increase electricity bills".

Labor leader Bill Shorten announced yesterday that the Opposition would aim for a 45% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030, from 2005 levels.

That initial target, recommended by the Climate Change Authority, would lay the groundwork for "carbon neutrality" by 2050.

It compares with the Coalition's carbon reduction target of about 28% by 2020, from 2005 levels.

Mr Shorten said Labor would consult with industry on the policy before announcing a final figure next year.

Senior Federal Government frontbencher Christopher Pyne joined Mr Hunt in ridiculing Labor's 2030 carbon emissions target, describing it as a mad thought bubble.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is in France for the Paris Climate Change Conference this weekend, with all major economies aiming to set new global emissions reductions targets.

Prominent environmental advocate Dr David Suzuki was among more than 50 policy experts, scientists and economists to sign a letter released yesterday calling for a global halt on new coalmines.

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