Former US vice-president and climate change activist Al Gore has dismissed the Opposition's climate change policy, but praised the Government as a world leader for its climate action.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott intends on dumping the Government's carbon tax if the Coalition wins the September election.
Mr Abbott says the Opposition would implement a direct-action plan which involves planting trees and providing financial incentives for polluters to reduce their carbon output.
But Mr Gore told Lateline that the plan has never worked in countries that have implemented it.
When asked what he thought of Mr Abbott's strategy, Mr Gore said: "It didn't work [in the US] - it hasn't worked anywhere."
But Mr Gore applauded Prime Minister Julia Gillard for her "courage and vision" on climate change, saying the world must stand up to the challenge.
"Australia has inspired the world by taking some very responsible steps, even though Australia is the world's largest coal exporter," he said.
"I was cheered by the news this past week from Australia that electricity from wind power is now cheaper than electricity from a plant that is newly constructed to burn coal."
Mr Gore says Australia has always been a continent of extreme weather, but the extremes appear to be getting worse.
"Last week's downpours and deluges in Queensland continue a pattern," he said.
"The fires just not too many weeks before are of the kind that have led Australian firefighters to say, as they've said to me, that they have never experienced the kinds of fires that they have been called upon to fight in recent years.
"So these changes are gathering momentum. The extreme weather events connected to the climate crisis are becoming more intense and more frequent."
Mr Gore said although he did not want to weigh into Australian politics, he would be watching the federal election very closely.
"I'm very impressed with your current prime minister; I think she's shown a great deal of courage and vision," he said.
"And I think that Australians may look very carefully at the progress that has taken place and also look at the very powerful evidence that the climate crisis is having a very harsh impact on Australia, as predicted - as your own scientists have eloquently warned over and over again.
"I would certainly question the conclusion that public opinion polls are going to decide the outcome of an election so far away."