It's a strange time to be a grassroots climate campaigner. The Act on Climate collective miss hitting the road across Victoria and working with people on the ground. Nonetheless, our efforts to champion climate justice must continue—even if they're largely online at the moment.
As you know, our long push for science-based Emissions Reduction Targets concluded on March 31 and we're now waiting for the Andrews government to announce the targets.
Yet changes to the parliamentary sitting schedule in response to the pandemic means the ten-sitting-day window has been pushed back. We might not get an announcement until Thursday 6 August.
We're fired up to get cracking on our next big campaign so we're not going to wait. We'll make an announcement next week with our next steps and ways you can get involved (so keep your eyes peeled).
Until then, here’s a quick update on our efforts over the last month...
VICTORIA NEEDS A CLIMATE-FOCUSED COVID RECOVERY:
The battle to define the economic recovery has begun. Will governments champion the community interest and climate justice or will it listen to lobbyists intent on entrenching fossil fuels?
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused immense disruption to our society. The economic shockwave has hit and will continue to reverberate and disproportionately affect vulnerable people in our community. Peoples lives and livelihoods are at stake. Meanwhile, we're facing a climate crisis. Deep emissions cuts over the next decade are needed if we're to avoid catastrophic impacts. We need system change.
Friends of the Earth Melbourne has launched an online petition calling on the Andrews government to make climate justice a focus of Victoria's economic recovery. Sign the petition today.
OUR SPECIAL 'EARTH DAY' MESSAGE:
Fifty years ago, people across the United States participated in the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970. The event demonstrated the community's increasing awareness of environmental damage and commitment to protect the natural world.
Jemma, Mat, and Anna from the Act on Climate collective and FoE activists put together a video message to mark Earth Day 2020. Click here to take a look and remember what makes FoE special.
EARTH DAY FORUM A SUCCESS:
Act on Climate campaigner Anna Langford presented at Friends of the Earth's well-attended forum on fossil gas extraction in Victoria. Anna looked at the convergence between campaigns to stop fossil gas and secure strong Emissions Reduction Targets.
Keynote speaker Mark Ogge of the Australia Institute outlined the flawed research behind the state government's shock decision to scrap the moratorium on onshore gas extraction. Click here to watch the forum.
FOLLOW UP FORUM ANNOUNCED ON CLIMATE SOLUTIONS:
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused immense disruption to our society. While we’re all working together to flatten the curve, game-changing climate solutions are taking shape in Victoria.
We're pleased to hold a special forum to showcase some of the exciting renewable energy projects that are on the cards and present ideas for how to make them happen.
Join us on Wednesday 13 May to hear from renewable energy sector experts and FoE’s grassroots campaigners. RSVPs essential, so click here to register.
(HAIR)CUTS FOR A CAUSE - MAYBE MULLET FUNDRAISER:
We're heading into tough economic times... To help Friends of the Earth weather the storm, we've launched a cheeky fundraiser: MAYBE MULLET!
Li Mei, Nikkola, and I are putting the fate of our hair in your hands. Would you like to see us sport an iconic mullet?... Or do you prefer the classic campaigner look?...
We'll base what happens to our lockdown locks on the option that receives the most donations, so click here to chip in, vote, and help FoE thrive.
ACT ON CLIMATE BLOGGING UP A STORM:
Pip Grylls and the Act on Climate collective have been blogging up a storm lately. If you're looking for something to read to pass the 'iso' hours, check out our articles on activism and solidarity in the time of COVIC-19, the need for a climate-focussed recovery, and great books for isolation.
If you'd like to contribute to the blog, please email [email protected].
There are plenty of informative online events coming up in May and beyond. We'd love to see you at the following:
- Tues 5 May - A Clean Recovery, Clean Energy Council
- Wed 6 May - A Renewables-Led Economic Recovery, Smart Energy Council
- Wed 6 May - Gippsland Smart Futures Series: Large-scale Renewable Energy Projects
- Wed 13 May - Vic Climate Solutions Forum
- Fri 15 May - #ClimateStrike online
- Thurs 28 May - Maybe Mullet livestream
- June 2-Aug 6 - Rapid Response to Emissions Reduction Targets announcement
And remember, you're always welcome to join us for weekly Act on Climate meetings which we're now holding online via Zoom (Mondays at 6pm).
That's all from us for now. See you on the (virtual) campaign trail...