April 2019 Newsletter


Murder on the Reef The AMCS is showing this film on 6 April at Sydney University at 6pm tickets $12 https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/murder-on-the-reef-qa-sydney-university-premiere-screening-tickets-58389833564 and 7 April at Bondi Pavilion Theatre 6.30pm https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/murder-on-the-reef-documentary-qa-bondi-pavilion-theatre-tickets-58392043173

The Economy and climate change Northside Forum group has speakers talking about this issue Saturday 13 April 12-2m at the Terrace Room, Union Hotel, 271 Pacific Highway, North Sydney.  Bookings essential.http://northsideforum.org.au/

Visit SA’s renewable energy sites The Climate Council is running a tour of the large-scale renewable energy projects in South Australia 1-3 May.  For information and to book go to  https://www.climatecouncil.org.au/south-australia-renewables-trip/

Help planting for small bird habitat  The Habitat Network will be holding a planting session at Bedlam Bay near the oval in Gladesville Hospital off Punt Road, Gladesville on Saturday 18 May 9.30-11.30 am. Families welcome. For more information go to http://www.habitatnetwork.org

Bob Brown’s Adani convoy  If you are concerned about the Adani mine, you can join Bob Brown’s convoy to the area where the mine is to happen. This will happen during April. For details and registration go to https://www.bobbrown.org.au/stopadaniconvoy


In the last  month we have done the following:

Made a submission objecting to the plan for the oil company Equinor to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight.

We had a meeting with John Alexander, on 12 March.
It was another disappointing meeting and was a re-run of previous ones we have had with him.  He believes we still have plenty of transition time to 100% renewables and emphasised the economy cannot be damaged because of that transition.

He said:

  • Battery storage can’t compare with coal fired power stations in terms of providing “baseload power” (a term no longer relevant but always trotted out by the Coalition)
  • battery storage is unviable
  • electricity reliablity had decreased and costs increased because of renewables
  • it was an extreme view that Australia should lead the way in renewables and inferred 100% renewables was an extreme view
  • “renewables aren’t any good if the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine”
  • HELE power stations are important in providing electricity

He was scathing of the capacity of battery storage and was totally unaware of the existence of solar thermal, going as far as to question its capability to provide and store power.

He claimed we would comfortably reach the Paris target.

He was unaware that renewable energy had played a significant part in stopping major blackouts in NSW during summer.

Suggested EV’s weren’t viable because they are limited in how far they can travel.

When asked if he would join Rebekha Sharkie’s Parliamentary friends of Climate Change group he said he would consider it.

It is important to remember that he has voted against a carbon price, a mineral resources tax, increasing investment in renewable energy, ARENA and protecting the Great Barrier Reef. (go to the website to see how he has voted on other issues) https://theyvoteforyou.org.au/people/representatives/bennelong/john_alexander


Labor and Adani  Labor still has not definitively ruled out stopping Adani so you can sign the letter asking federal Labor leaders to do so before the election. https://aycc.good.do/labor_adani_2019/leaders_adani/
Alternatively, you could ring Bill Shorten’s office and leave a message.  Here’s some helpful hints for when you call. https://www.aycc.org.au/call_shorten_adani_2019

Climate change threatens our financial stability The RBA deputy govenor,Guy Debelle, has warned climate change threatens our financial stability and must be considered as a trend by policy makers and businesses. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/mar/12/climate-change-poses-risk-to-australias-financial-stability-warns-rba-deputy-governor  In the meantime, coal barons who donate heavily to the LNP deny it needs to be treated seriously. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/13/coal-baron-and-lnp-donor-blasts-rba-for-sounding-alarm-on-climate-change
There is a global collapse in the number of coal fired power stations being built https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/28/global-collapse-in-number-of-new-coal-fired-power-plants
And coal is more expensive than renewables https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/25/coal-more-expensive-wind-solar-us-energy-study

Recycling clothing and reducing emissions Two Australians, with help from CSIRO and Queensland University of Technology, have developed a process that can process blended fabrics into reusable fibres. https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2019/mar/17/holy-grail-how-textile-recycling-can-help-slash-emissions-pollution-and-landfill

Worldwide school strike Despite politicians denoucing the strike, students all around the world gathered to call on drastic action on climate change. Be inspired https://act.350.org/mailings/view/67464

Japanese investors moving away from coal Japanese investors are looking to invest in renewables, not coal fired power stations.  This will have significant implications for our federal and state budgets. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/18/energy-analysts-forecast-the-end-of-coal-in-asia-as-japanese-investors-back-renewables
Japan, which buys 39% of Australia’s thermal coal, has signalled it will oppose new or expanded coal fired stations as it moves more rapidly to renewables. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/31/japans-environment-minister-to-oppose-any-new-or-expanded-coal-fired-power-plants

QBE has announced it will stop insuring new coal mines, power plants and transport networks on 1 July 2019 and will entirely phase out its existing thermal coal insurance business by 2030. Yeah! Now sign the letter asking them to move out of insuring oil and gas https://www.marketforces.org.au/campaigns/insurance/qbe/

UN warning about ecological damage The UN has produced a report that ecological damage is putting the lives of millions at risk.  We have the technology to deal with it, but governments are dragging their feet. https://unfccc.int/news/un-pollution-is-putting-millions-of-lives-at-risk

Australian super funds and climate change One third of super funds have invested in companies such as Whitehaven, Santos and Woodside that are fuelling climate change.  Sign the letter to your super fund and ask they ditch investments in these companies. https://www.marketforces.org.au/campaigns/super/outofline/

Reliable electricity – what does that mean?  Read this guide from the Climate Council to separate facts from fiction. https://www.climatecouncil.org.au/resources/your-guide-to-reliable-electricity/

Hazelwood and the move to renewables A positive story https://www.theguardian.com/environment/commentisfree/2019/mar/29/hazelwood-windfarm-promises-green-shoots-in-a-coal-valley