Friends of the Earth has welcomed today's release of the Victorian government's 'Jobs for the Future Economy' package.
“Today's announcement shows both vision and leadership – Victoria is now in front of other Australian states on the issue of green transformation. The package provides the basis for a coherent vision of a greener economy .”
Media release April 30, 2010
Friends of the Earth
Green jobs package welcomed
National environmental group Friends of the Earth has warmly welcomed today's release of the Victorian government's 'Jobs for the Future Economy' package.
â€œThis is exactly the type of approach we need to see from the Government and all Partiesâ€ said campaigns co-ordinator Cam Walker. â€œToday's announcement shows both vision and leadership â€“ Victoria is now in front of other Australian states on the issue of green transformation. 'Jobs for the future economy' provides the basis for a coherent vision of a greener economy and commits substantial funding, which will drive innovation, investment and employment in the low carbon economy.â€
â€œOur economy is currently 'hot, wet and heavy'; that is, it uses a lot of energy and water, and produces a lot of waste. As climate change bears down on us, we will need to transition away from the old carbon and water intensive energy sources, and this package is a significant indicator of where our economy could move, with the right government supportâ€.
â€œThe state government has been working to position Victoria as a high technology innovation hub. Sadly, much of the investment to date has been in the wrong places â€“ carbon capture, biotechnology, geo-engineering and so on. This plan commits significant funds to a range of sustainable research and development organisations and institutes working in the realm of solar, water supply, pollution detection and efficiency. We welcome this investment in the technologies of the future.â€
Other highlights of the package include:
- emphasis on water and energy efficiency in public buildings such as schools, commercial properties and households. This includes $60 million for greening of government buildings;
- significant support for employment training in new sector jobs;
- a series of solar energy hubs;
- encouraging the roll out of renewable energy through the streamlining of approval processes while enshrining open and transparent consultation with communities;
- the commercialisation of locally developed clean energy technology.
â€œWe commend the government for standing firm on the issue of the increase to the waste levy. Despite some opposition, this is good policy, which will drive up recycling rates while creating new jobs in the short termâ€.
â€œSignificantly, the employment and investment opportunities in this package will be felt around the state, in Melbourne, regional centres and rural communities.â€
â€œThe two key areas where we see the need for caution are the drive to expand biofuels â€“ we need to ensure this doesÂ not include 'residue' from our precious native forests â€“ and plans to further involve Victoria in the global carbon market. There are a range of deeply concerning human rights and environmental problems with Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects. Victoria should be very cautious about engaging in any international carbon marketsâ€.
Further comment: Cam Walker 0419 338 047