Budget 2021 failed miserably to address the ongoing climate crisis or to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. The capitalist system could not restart the global economy, so countries are looking towards green jobs for new opportunities for prosperity. Clearly, the Perikatan Nasional government has failed to respond to the peoples’ aspiration to join the ongoing global green revolution.
Budget 2021 could have pushed harder towards energy efficiency, renewable energy and public transport to kick-start the national economy. The only thing green about the Perikatan Nasional’s Budget 2021 was the ‘recycling’ of past programs including ‘re-highlighting’ ongoing transportation projects.
Putrajaya is saving RM6 billion in fuel subsidy temporarily due to the low petrol prices. The RM6 billion fuel subsidy savings could have been used to purchase nearly 6,600 electric buses creating nearly 7,000 long-term jobs.
The SAVE 2.0 programme for energy-efficient home appliances will only benefit the top 20%. The B80 will not spend RM1,000 on new air-conditioners and refrigerators just to pocket a RM200 rebate during economically uncertain times.
Instead, the government could have provided a voucher to retrofit and fix houses belonging to the B10. The government should have encouraged installation of solar panels for houses and government premises such as schools and hospitals. Rooftop solar generates more domestic jobs compared to large scale solar.
In 2019, TNB spent RM 10 billion to import coal to generate more than half our electricity needs. Budget 2021 could have pushed for transitioning our power plants from dirty foreign coal power plan to cleaner domestic gas. Eliminating coal imports would easily add about 1% to our GDP while reducing air pollution.
Bureau for Environment & Climate Crisis
Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM)
Parti Sosialis Malaysia Negeri Melaka (PSM Melaka)