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June News

Can you donate to Friends of the Earth to help interrupt business as usual?

Donate to FoEWhile we have been putting our communities first, staying inside and physically distancing, governments and corporations continue to put profit before people. Industries like coal, gas and logging have been deemed “essential”, and for them it’s Business As Usual.  Did you know that the Andrews government will soon announce which companies have won exploration rights to drill for gas and oil in State waters from Cape Otway to the South Australian border?  Meanwhile, the Victorian government has allowed salvage logging in devastated native forests, as rivers run dry. Together we can protect the places we love, and continue to campaign for climate justice. 

Contribute to campaign costs with a tax-deductible donation before June 30 here.


Chain Reaction magazine out now!

The May 2020 issue of Friends of the Earth’s national magazine is out now.  To read articles online click here or download a PDF of the magazine here.

Articles: Coronavirus crisis a wake-up call for system change - 'Miracle cows' highlight risks of gene editing - Australia's Black Summer - A national offshore wind strategy - How to transition out of the gas industry - Nuclear dump decision trashes indigenous rights - Recording FoE's 45 years of creative resistance - Scorecard gives Australia's environment 1 out of 10 - Sand mining fuels murders and devastation - Fighting for clean water in a Tasmanian town ... and more.

3CR Dirt Radio: Forest victory in the courts!

Megan and Lucinda catch up with the Steve Meacher, the President of the Friends of the leadbeaters possum and Cath Rouse from the FoE Forest Collective to talk about the recent Federal Court decision to halt logging in 66 coups across Victoria's central highlands. Final hearings to be set by the end of the month, find out why this could be a Franklin Dam scale win for the environemnt movement.

Listen: Forest victory in the courts audio episode

Listen: Forest victory in the courts mp3

People’s Climate Strategy for Victoria

PCS photo

Friends of the Earth Melbourne's Act on Climate collective launched the People's Climate Strategy for Victoria with an online event watched by over 1,000 people.  The People's Climate Strategy project aims to lobby and influence the Victorian government's climate plans, due by 31 October 2020, and will be presented to the State government later this year to help shape their first climate strategy and inform future climate plans every five years until 2050. 

We need your help to ensure the strategy is capable of getting us to zero emissions as soon as possible.

Friends of the Earth's Act on Climate collective will be facilitating regional working groups for community surveying, brainstorming, writing local case studies, and more.  Please fill in the survey to register your interest here.  

Big action to say NO to onshore gas drilling

Extend the moratorium

As members and supporters will know, the Victorian government has announced that it will lift the hard won moratorium on onshore conventional gas drilling. While legislation still needs to be passed to allow drilling to start, the current moratorium will lapse soon – on June 30.

We are planning an online action to mark the day and demonstrate the continued community opposition to all forms of new fossil fuel development.

Please keep an eye on the FoEM website for details closer to the date or feel free to get in touch with Cam at: [email protected]


Virtual paddle-out to stop offshore gas

As migrating whales reappeared along the Victorian coastline, many people joined us on World Oceans Day 8 June to say NO to State government plans to allow offshore gas drilling in western Victoria.

An announcement on who will gain the rights to explore offshore for gas is expected after 30 June so we worked with local communities, businesses, the surfing community and tourism operators to make our opposition known.

Community members from OCEAN (Otway Climate Emergency Action Network), a newly formed community group, held a physical paddle out on the day to object to the plans for offshore gas, see the ocean paddlers here.

Have a squiz at the great gallery of photos from the virtual paddle-out here.  For more photos check out #Stayinpaddleout  

It’s not too late to add your own!  Thanks to everyone who joined the action.

3CR Radioactive show: Olympic Dam uranium mine expansion

Scott Morrison announced yesterday that the Olympic Dam uranium mine expansion will be fast tracked as part of a covid 19 recovery, bypassing Traditional Owners, ignoring the environmental impacts and creating health and waste problems for future generations.  Check out this interview with SA's David Noonan to get to the low down on why the expansion is not worth the risk.

Listen: Olympic Dam expansion audio episode

Listen: Olympic Dam expansion mp3


Rebuild with renewables

Global Wind Day

The coronavirus outbreak marks a fork in the road. Yesterday on Global Wind Day, we called on governments to #BuildBackBetter with a renewables-led recovery resisting polluting fossil fuels. 

Supporters of Yes2Renewables took to social media posing with model wind turbines to send that message to highlight the benefits of renewable energy for jobs and action on climate change, rejecting the Morrison government's attempts to roll-out a "gas-fired recovery".  Renewable energy projects around the country could create up to 50,000 jobs by 2025, creating jobs and cutting emissions at the same time. Get into renewables action.  

Follow Yes2Renewables on social media

Support our ongoing campaign to get a move on with offshore wind here

To get involved with the Yes2Renewables campaign, contact [email protected] 


New rail options for everyone

Build MM2

Building toll roads causes more people to drive.  While the Victorian government is building the Melbourne Metro 1 (MM1) rail project and the Suburban Rail Loop, we must continue to push for more rail projects over toll roads.

The proposed Melbourne Metro 2 (MM2) rail project is imperative for a strong economic recovery, creating thousands of jobs and building an inclusive society with affordable public transport options. 

Will you join us to call on decision makers to build Melbourne Metro 2 (MM2) rail tunnel instead of toll roads?  Let's make Victoria more liveable and accessible for everyone.  

Send an email to MPs here

Why Melbourne Metro 2 is the next logical step for Melbourne’s transport watch here 


Strzelecki koala update

Skats under peppermint gum tree

Friends of the Earth plans to complete 200 Strzelecki koala surveys by the end of July, with 152 completed to date.

Five new koala populations have been added to the Strzelecki Koala Map, details here. These include a small population centring on 200ha of bush within the Holey Plains State Park. The park was severely burnt by bushfires in early 2019.

Although it is encouraging to know that koala have survived the fires, their long term survival is not guaranteed. Anecdotal information from residents from Yinnar South show koalas haven't been seen in these areas for two decades.

As a side issue, 200 hectares of Holey Plains State Park appears to have been impacted by aerial application of herbicides on pine plantations this year. FoE observed many coppicing Eucalypts suffering from what appeared to be damage wrought by the herbicide sprays.  The Department of Agriculture is now investigating. 

Aerial spraying of herbicides and spray drift here.  Contribute to support koala surveys here.

River Country mid-year update

River Country is hard at work adapting to keep up the fight for our rivers. Read about our community events, protests, and how we are collaborating with allies to have an impact in 2020 here.  

Membership Drive update

Thank you to all our new Friends of the Earth who signed up as part of our Membership Drive last week.  You've joined a group of activists and supporters campaigning for social and environmental justice.  You are part of the change we can make happen together.  You can become a member of Friends of the Earth here


Keep up the good fight and stay well until next time.

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