Ambassadors to Australia from Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany and Denmark are all hoping their resident country will bring more ambitious targets to an international summit in Glasgow in November.
On Sunday, Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce said the government's junior partner agreed conditionally to the long-term climate target.
But Mr Joyce last week dismissed the possibility of changes to mid-term commitments to slash emissions by 26 to 28 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030, calling any increase "unlikely".
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has instead said he will show international leaders the country will "meet and beat" its existing 2030 promise.
While the debate has largely centred on a 2050 net zero goal, many European countries have long moved past the long-term target to focus on achieving ambitious targets in the "critical decade" to 2030.
Swedish ambassador Henrik Cederin told TheCanberra Times Australia's conditional commitment to a net zero 2050 target was a "very important step forward" but needed to be coupled with an increase to 2030 targets.
"We've seen countries around the world come up with more ambitious targets for 2030," he said.
"I think we would like to see that also coming from Australia. As you know, this is very much a critical decade we are in right now, we need to reach better results already by 2030.
"It also makes sense from a implementation point of view that if you have a target - a long-term target - you need to have a strong mid-term target to reach it."
It's a sentiment that is echoed across other European ambassadors in Canberra as nation leaders prepare to present their climate action promises to the world stage.
Denmark has said it would commit to a 70 per cent reduction on its 1990 emissions levels by 2030 with a 50 per cent target to be achieved by 2025.
Danish ambassador Pernille Dahler Kardel said the ambitious target would require "significant investment, both financially and politically" but was necessary to curb catastrophic temperature increases.
By 2030, Switzerland will bring a promise to halve emissions by 2030, Sweden will cut 70 per cent of domestic transport emissions, while Belgium will aim to achieve a 55 per cent cut.
Germany hopes to cut its emissions by at least 65 per cent on 1990 levels by 2030, and by 88 per cent by 2040.
German ambassador Dr Thomas Fitschen said high targets for this decade were critical to avoid climate tipping points.
"Glasgow is a decisive moment for the global community to deliver," he said.
"We will need more ambitious climate targets from as many states as possible. That should include Australia."
A climate-friendly economy will cost a lagging Australia
Applying carbon tariffs is one option the European Union is looking to use in order to apply pressure on countries without ambitious targets, like Australia.
Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne said the trading bloc was the country's largest two-way trading partner and second largest source of foreign investment.
But EU ambassador to Australia Dr Michael Pulch wrote in an opinion piece last week that countries lagging behind on climate action should be prepared to pay a price.
"Putting a price on carbon is essential, one way or another," he said.
"We want to lead by example and engage with partners, but we are prepared to take more action, if necessary."
Belgian ambassador Michel Goffin said it shouldn't be seen as climate sanction but rather a way to level the playing field.
"It's just to make sure that we are having a level playing field that is comparable," he told The Canberra Times.
"Countries that don't take action now will certainly pay a big price by not taking action.
"You're going to have to pay a bit more [and] your trade is going to be a little bit more expensive."
Sweden's position is in line with that of Mr Goffin and Mr Pulch, too.
Carbon leakage is a concern for countries committing to tougher mid-term emissions targets. It's a worry that major exporters will simply offload their dirty industries to other countries with more relaxed emissions reduction goals.
If European producers are going to have abide by the rules of the new green economy, then those in Australia will have to expect to be slapped with carbon tariffs.
"I think it's a good step in addressing carbon leakage," Mr Cederin said.
"This is something that countries around the world, if they have lower ambitions on climate, will come up against in international trade."
Australia seen as a 'pariah' on climate change
For Mr Goffin, his first few months in Canberra have been somewhat of a surprise.
He said Europe's view of Australia as the "bad student" in the climate action debate needed to be corrected.
"Australia is really seen as a pariah [on climate action] to rest of the world, but it's not true," he said.
In contrast to the federal debate, the private sector and the state governments were leading the charge on climate action, he said.
"The federal government is bogged down in some sort of bizarre negotiations, it's hard to understand," Mr Goffin said.
"But also the perception of our politicians, and the image of Australia, has to be a little bit corrected there - very, very good, positive things are happening here."
Belgium is a small country with only 65 kilometres of coast along its northern border. But, despite its size, the western European nation ranked fourth in wind energy production.
With the vast amounts of land and coastline Australia had, the potential to become a powerhouse green economy was already there, Mr Goffin said.
"I think Australia should definitely be the Switzerland of climate change," he said.
"It could be - and it should be - because Australia is impacted as strongly as any other country."
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: