On 23 February 2017, the Climate Change Bill successfully passed through the Victorian Parliament, creating a new Climate Change Act. This new legislation is a crucial step in positioning Victoria as a leader in climate change action.

The Climate Change Act 2017 provides Victoria with a world-leading legislative foundation to manage climate change risks, maximise the opportunities that arise from decisive action, and drive our transition to a climate resilient community and economy with net zero emissions by 2050. It gives effect to the majority of the commitments set out in the Victorian Government Response to the 2015 Independent Review of the Climate Change Act 2010

The Act:

  • establishes a long-term emissions reduction target of net zero by 2050
  • requires five yearly interim targets, to keep Victoria on track to meet this long-term target
  • introduces a new set of policy objectives and an updated set of guiding principles to embed climate change in government decision making
  • requires the government to develop a Climate Change Strategy every five years, which will set out how Victoria will meet its targets and adapt to the impacts of climate change (from 2020)
  • requires Adaptation Action Plans for key systems that are either vulnerable to the impacts of climate change or essential to ensure Victoria is prepared (from 2021)
  • establishes a pledging model to reduce emissions from government's own operations and from across the economy (from 2020)
  • establishes a system of periodic reporting to provide transparency, accountability and ensure the community remains informed.

The Act sits alongside other key Victorian Government energy and climate change initiatives including Victoria's Climate Change Framework, Victoria's Climate Change Adaptation Plan 2017-2020 and the Victoria's Renewable Energy Action Plan.

The Climate Change Act 2017 is available on the Victorian Legislation website.

See fact sheets below for more information about the new legislation:

Accessible MS Word versions:

Page last updated: 23/09/20