Pages tagged "Climate Justice"
GREAT NEWS -- on 21st September 2017 the Victorian Renewable Energy Target passed in the lower house in state parliament!
This is a historic moment for Victoria's renewable energy future. Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) will create over 10,000 jobs, attract as much as $9 billion in investment, and cut electricity sector emissions by up to 16% by 2034-35.
The lower house vote takes Victoria one step closer to jobs, cheaper power and climate action. It's a big win for the community, the labour movement, business, and everyone hungry for action on climate change.
Friends of the Earth Melbourne's Yes 2 Renewables campaign has long called for Victoria to set its own renewable energy target to create jobs and act on climate.
Now there's only one hurdle to go: the VRET will go to the upper house in the coming weeks. Read our full response here.
Keen to get involved? Yes 2 Renewables meets every Tuesday at 6pm, Friends of the Earth (Upstairs), 312 Smith St, CollingwoodRead more
This spring we will be kick-starting our new Sustainable Cities campaign and getting active with a sponsored walk across our city. Walk This Way will be an opportunity to highlight the key areas of community action in the face of climate change and build our vision of a sustainable city.
Beginning on the banks of the Yarra in Melbourne’s CBD and journeying through the urban spaces, parklands and communities we call call home, we will finish up at the heart of Melbourne’s activist community here at Friends of the Earth for a Sustainable Cities campaign launch party!Read more
FoE welcome $4.7 million Andrews govt grant scheme for climate action: "Program will bring jobs, investment to regional Vic"
MEDIA RELEASE: 24 July 2017
Friends of the Earth have welcomed an Andrews government announcement of a $4.7 million grant scheme to kick-start community projects that tackle climate change saying it will bring jobs and investment to regional Victoria.
Minister for Energy, Environment, and Climate Change Lily D'Ambrosio announced the grant scheme at a sold out community event in Maryborough organised by Friends of the Earth with the support of the Goldfields Sustainability Group, Transition Creswick, and Maryborough Community House.
"Community members in regional Victoria are on the frontline of climate change impacts and will tell you that climate change is changing the seasons," said Leigh Ewbank, Friends of the Earth's Act on Climate coordinator.
"For some communities this means increased water scarcity and drought, and others it means heightened risk of heatwave and bushfire."
"What unites all regional communities is the urgent need for governments to invest in climate change action. The Andrews government's $4.7 million grant scheme will kickstart community-led solutions."
The election of Donald Trump, the Brexit vote in the UK, and the continued rise of Right wing populist parties across western Europe is a huge concern for anyone who wants to see action on climate change and protection of the environment. Closer to home, the election of similar parties – notably Pauline Hanson’s One Nation – underscores how this worldview is gaining acceptance in the mainstream.
This requires progressive organisations to think about how they campaign.Read more
Strengthened climate laws pass Vic parliament: Andrews govt can put a down-payment on climate action in budget
MEDIA RELEASE: 23 Feb 2017
BREAKING--The Andrews government's push to strengthen Victoria's climate change laws has passed the upper house--winning the support of The Greens and crossbenchers Fiona Patten and James Purcell.
Friends of the Earth welcome the passage of amendments to the Victorian Climate Change Act. That enshrines a zero-net emissions target by 2050 into law. It also requires governments to set five-yearly interim emissions reduction targets and adaptation action plans.
"Community members who are seeing the impacts of climate change will welcome the strengthened climate change laws," said Leigh Ewbank, FoE climate spokesperson.
"We commend the Andrews government and all MPs who supported the bill which will help prevent climate change from worsening and prepare communities for the impacts that are now locked in."
The Climate Change Act was put in place in 2010 but was gutted by the Baillieu government a year later. Victoria lost almost five years in a decade when the world was running out of time to avoid climate catastrophe.
"With the Act finally re-built to include greenhouse gas reductions, it is essential we get on with the task of rapidly transforming Victoria's economy away from its current reliance on coal. We do not have any more time to waste," said Ewbank.
Friends of the Earth says the Andrews government can make a downpayment in the upcoming state budget.
"The Andrews government can follow through on its commitment to climate change action with strategic budget allocations in May," said Mr Ewbank.
"Victorians overwhelmingly support action on climate change and want to see governments put money where their mouth is."
Friends of the Earth say the passage of the strengthened climate laws is a positive indication for how legislation on Victoria's Renewable Energy Target will fare.
"Action on climate change means boosting jobs and investment in renewable energy," said Pat Simons, FoE renewable energy spokesperson.
"The Victorian Renewable Energy Target will create climate 10,000 jobs and is something crossbench MPs can support."
The Matthew Guy opposition voted against moves to strengthen state climate policy, just one week after pledging to scrap the VRET if elected.
"Matthew Guy's decision to vote against climate policy and vow to scrap the renewables target could relegate the Coalition to the political wilderness," said Leigh Ewbank.
"Voters reward political parties that act on climate and grow renewables. It's a reservior of support that the opposition cannot tap with its current platform."
Environment group Friends of the Earth reject Matthew Guy Opposition's threat to cut the Victorian Renewable Energy Target, saying the Liberals ideological attack on affordable renewable energy will lead to power price rises.
“Matthew Guy's ideological opposition to the Victorian Renewable Energy Target is a threat to jobs, investment and affordable renewable energy,” said Pat Simons, Friends of the Earth's renewable energy spokesperson.Read more
Media release February 8, 2017
Today the Lower House of the Victorian parliament is debating the Resources Legislation Amendment (Fracking Ban) Bill 2016, which will permanently ban fracking in the state.
This debate is unusual, because the ALP, Greens, Coalition and minor parties have all announced their support for the ban. “This highlights the massive community opposition to onshore gas drilling in Victoria” said Friends of the Earth co-ordinator Cam Walker.Read more
Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley said climate change presents a challenge to the sector in Victoria.
"As the emergency management sector, we must acknowledge and prepare for the impact of climate change, on all aspects of emergency preparedness, response and recovery," said Commissioner Lapsley.
"Responding to the impacts of climate change, and helping communities be better prepared for the risks and affects, is at the heart of our shared responsibility and is essential to building resilience."
Friends of the Earth welcome Emergency Management Victoria's initiative and say the program underscores the need for the state parliament to quickly restore the Climate Change Act which was gutted by the Baillieu government in 2011.
"We're in dangerous territory when it comes to climate change," said Leigh Ewbank, Friends of the Earth's climate change spokesperson.
"Victorians have been left stranded with an impotent climate change policy since 2011 when the Baillieu government gutted the Climate Change Act," said Ewbank.
"Resolute action to tackle climate change and protect Victorian communities is needed now more than ever."
Efforts to restore the Victorian Climate Change Act 2010 are now underway, with the Andrews government seeking to implement the recommendations of an independent review of the legislation.
The Matthew Guy opposition voted against restoring the Climate Change Act in the final parliamentary sitting week of 2016. An upper house vote is expected early in 2017.
Friends of the Earth -- the organisation that coordinated successful community campaigns for a permanent ban on unconventional gas and a Victorian Renewable Energy Target -- are calling on upper house MPs to show political leadership by supporting the Climate Change Act.
"Preventing climate change impacts from getting worse is something all political parties can support. Failure to restore the state climate legislation will leave communities exposed to increased drought, heatwaves, and bushfire risk," said Leigh Ewbank.
"Upper House MPs have an opportunity to show leadership on climate change by supporting the strengthened climate legislation."
The group says the state opposition can redeem itself on the issue by allowing the Climate Change Act to pass the legislative council.
"Opposition leader Matthew Guy failed his first test of leadership by voting against steps to restore the climate change act," said Leigh Ewbank.
"Leader of the opposition in the upper house, Mary Wooldridge, can redeem the Coalition by allowing the climate change legislation to pass the upper house."
"The community would welcome Liberal and National party support for restoring the climate change act."
Friends of the Earth are closely monitoring the passage of the Victorian Climate Change Act.
Record global warming in 2016 as Matthew Guy opposition block Vic govt moves to strengthen Climate Change Act
New analysis released by NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) over night has found record global warming in 2016 as the Matthew Guy opposition block the Andrews government's moves to strengthen the Victorian Climate Change Act.
The NASA/NOAA analysis once again confirms the longterm warming trend and found "Earth’s 2016 surface temperatures were the warmest since modern recordkeeping began in 1880."
In a statement, the organisations note 2016 is "the third year in a row to set a new record for global average surface temperatures."
The worrying climate change data comes just weeks after the Matthew Guy opposition voted against as the Andrews government's moves to restore the Victorian Climate Change Act -- which was gutted by the Baillieu government in 2011.
"We're in dangerous territory when it comes to global warming," said Leigh Ewbank, Friends of the Earth's climate change spokesperson.
"Victorians have been left stranded with an impotent climate change policy since 2011 when the Bailleiu government gutted the Climate Change Act," said Leigh Ewbank, Friends of the Earth's climate change spokesperson.
Friends of the Earth say the opposition's vote against steps to restore the climate change legislation was a failure of leadership that exposes Victorian communities to climate change impacts.
"Preventing climate change from worsening is something all political parties can support. Failure to restore the state climate change act will expose communities to increased drought, heatwaves, and bushfire risk," said Leigh Ewbank.
Friends of the Earth -- the organisation that coordinated successful community campaigns for a permanent ban on unconventional gas and a Victorian Renewable Energy Target -- said the opposition can redeem itself on the issue by supporting the amendments to the climate act in the upper house.
"Opposition leader Matthew Guy failed his first test of climate leadership by voting against the Climate Change Act in the lower house," said Leigh Ewbank.
"The opposition can redeem itself and be on the right side of history by supporting passage of the act in the upper house."
"The community would welcome Liberal and National party support for the strengthened climate legislation and ambitious Emissions Reduction Targets for the state."
Friends of the Earth are closely monitoring the passage of the Victorian Climate Change Act. An upper house vote is expected early in 2017.
Friends of the Earth has welcomed the Andrews government's plans to modernise and strengthen the Victorian Environmental Protection Authority in response to an extensive review of the body--the first since 1971.
"We welcome the Andrews government’s moves to strengthen the EPA," said Leigh Ewbank, Friends of the Earth campaign coordinator.
"These reforms will help bring the EPA into the 21st Century and equip it to protect communities and environment from emerging issues such as decommissioning coal mines and power plants."
Friends of the Earth say the EPA reforms come as the state grapples with climate change.
"Victoria needs a strong EPA to tackle climate change. The Federal government's policy failure on climate change requires leadership at the state level."
"An strengthened EPA will provide additional tools for the state government to cut greenhouse gas pollution and prevent climate change from getting worse."
Friends of the Earth look forward to seeing the planned restructure of the EPA this year paying dividends into the future.
The group will closely monitor the passage of amendments to modernise and strengthen the Environment Protection Act.
"An effective Environment Protection Authority is something all political parties can support. We look forward to seeing support from the opposition and crossbench so these reforms are implemented swiftly."