Sustainability in a global context can be broadly defined as meeting the needs of our current society without compromising those of our future generations. The human activities that contribute to climate change hold the greatest influence on the prospective state of our planet. Actions such as the burning of coal, natural gas and oil for electricity and heat create the largest single source of global greenhouse gas emissions. By committing to net-zero emissions targets, Australia can generate a systemic shift to a more sustainable economy that benefits the people and the planet.
In 2021, Australia pledged to achieve net zero by 2050. Net zero signifies an overall balance between the greenhouse gas emissions produced and the greenhouse gas emissions removed from the atmosphere. There are several ways to reduce emissions to mitigate climate change, including steering away from a reliance on fossil fuels to transition to renewable energy, using carbon capture and storage practices, reforestation and divesting from carbon-intensive industries where possible.
Sustainability in industry, broadly, describes business and environmental practices that aim to improve the longevity and viability of businesses. The Australian Government has announced a number of grants, promoting green initiatives and sustainable business practices that introduce new and innovative technologies to set new benchmarks for sustainability across all areas of Australian industry. These grants aim to benefit businesses and the environment by improving productivity and efficiency through embedding sustainable operations, environmental monitoring and technology, and competitive systems and practices.