The incoming chief scientist, Physicist Dr. Foley Cathy, wants Australia to be the world’s renewable energy leader and relatively cut down greenhouse gas emissions. In January, Cathy is the one who will fill the position of the outgoing chief scientist Dr. Finkel Alan. Speaking to Guardian Australia, she said that she believes the Morrison government is capable and serious about switching to a low-emissions economy.
Cathy is the current CSIRO chief scientist and will take the new role when the world is demanding scientific advice during the coronavirus pandemic. Cathy said that they need to take quick actions and employ all necessary measures and tools that will help to lower emissions. However, the Morrison government is unwilling to set a target to enable the country to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. Several crucial trading partners, such as South Korea and Japan, have endorsed this goal.
According to the UN’s climate panel, by 2050, the greenhouse gas emissions are supposed to reach net zero. This will help to keep global warming below 1.5C. When she was asked about the advice, she can give to the government concerning the target, Cathy said she is not yet in the job and has not gathered vital information. She added that she could not assess the situation as per not, but what she knows is that Australia is devoted to decreasing emissions and delivering the Paris agreement.
Alan has recommended that the quantity of gas in Australia’s power grid has to be increased to ensure there are low emissions and encourage the use of renewables. This made him defend his position in August following an open letter by climate scientists saying that it was against the Paris climate agreement. According to Cathy, those who signed the letter are esteemed scientists, and they gave their views from the scientific perspective. She added that the gas issue is crucial, saying that Finkel’s gas position would help decrease emissions faster.
Cathy said her first duty in the office is to ensure environmental scientists’ voices are heard. She has won many awards as a physicist who specializes in superconductors to help discover mineral deposits. For 36 years, she has been working at CSIRO. Marshall Larry, CSIRO’s chief executive, said that Cathy’s appointment was based on her scientific excellence. Cathy said that the biggest challenge is misinformation on climate change, which is spread through social media. She added that they would use the same social media to convey the correct information.