Australia faces an ‘apocalyptic’ scenario if Labor wins the election and does not use carryover credits to meet its 2030 emissions reduction targets, the federal energy minister says.

The coalition expects to meet its Paris target – a 26 to 28 per cent reduction on 2005 levels by 2030 – in part through a 15 per cent reduction created from carryover credits earned by beating Australia’s 2020 goal under the Kyoto Protocol.

The move has been criticised by Labor, although it is yet to decide if it will do the same to meet its more ambitious emissions target.

‘Labor will use it. Because to get to their 2030 target, 45 per cent target, will be economy-wrecking if they use the carryover,’ Energy Minister Angus Taylor told Sky News on Tuesday.

‘It will be apocalyptic if they don’t use it.’

Labor frontbencher Jenny McAllister says the party is taking advice on the carryover credits.

‘It ought not be used as an excuse for delaying real action,’ she told Sky News.

‘We do have a very ambitious target.

‘We want to see genuine transformation of the Australian economy so we do have a clean economy.’

But Environment Minister Melissa Price says other countries aren’t able to use carryover credits because they haven’t met previous targets.

‘The fact that we have carryover is actually really good news for Australia, it means we’ve over-achieved,’ she told Sky News.

‘We’re entitled to use carryover and that’s what we’re going to do.’