This is our last newsletter for the year. The picture remains frustrating for the lack of decisive and bold action on the part of the federal government (and states and NT) to put in strong policies to deal with climate change. We encourage you to continue writing letters, signing petitions, attending rallies and talking about climate change, particularly as the federal government continues to unconditionally support the fossil fuel industry.
We wish you all the best for the festive season. If you are thinking of giving a gift of the environmental kind, we direct you to our website. https://www.climatechangerg.org/what-can-you-do/some-useful-links/ This lists a range of environmental organisations working towards a 100% renewables and protection of our native fauna, flora and ecosystems.
And now to the news …
As at 21 November 2023 CO2 reading was 420.3 parts per million. Source NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). Safe level is 350 parts per million
SOME GOOD THINGS HAVE HAPPENED
Kenya had a public holiday on 13 November for a nationwide tree planting day, part of its ambitious plan to plant 15bn trees by 2032
Westpac announced a zero-deforestation target for loans to beef, dairy and sheep farming and tightened lending to new coal, oil and gas projects. NAB will not refinance Whitehaven coal or any other thermal coal project. An ANZ shareholder has taken the bank to court over concerns it is failing to manage risks posed by climate change and biodiversity loss.
Portugal produced more power from renewables than its electricity needs 31 October to 6 November
Indonesia installs world’s third largest floating solar farm https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-d&q=indonesia+floating+solar+farm#vhid=F4XqeHEcmfYUFM&vssid=videos-a7580739
Toowoomba council votes for moratorium on coal seam gas projects
The Queensland Department of Environment has refused the environmental approval of Clive Palmer’s Waratah Coal’s 1400 MW coal-fired power station in Central West Queensland. However, the Queensland Environment Minister will delay his decision on banning the power station for two years. Sign the petition asking he immediately reject the power station https://brisbane.foe.org.au/reject_waratah_petition
Newcastle port blockade successful https://michaelwest.com.au/coal-from-newcastle-the-port-blockade-that-aims-to-stop-it/
Federal government has managed to secure support to pass legislation to buy back water that will see more water released to the environment in the Murray Darling Basin https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-11-29/mdb-plan-legislation-set-to-pass/103163680
NSW government passes stronger emissions laws https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2023/nov/30/nsw-greenhouse-gas-emission-reduction-targets-law-net-zero-2050-2035-details
AND SOME BAD THINGS HAVE HAPPENED
Resources Minister Madeleine King justifies carbon capture and storage so that gas mining can continue. In the meantime, a new report shows Chevron is burying just a third of the carbon it promised to at its Gorgon gas project in WA.
NT Chief Minister Natasha Fyles holds shares in gas giant Woodside – a key supporter of the Middle Arm gas hub. Conflict of interest?
Glencore wants to inject liquefied carbon dioxide into Australia’s biggest underground fresh water reservoir, the Great Artesian Basin. https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2023-11-23/great-artesian-basin-carbon-capture-project-opposition/103080402
Rally to protest COP28 will be held at 12 noon Belmore Park on 2 December. This year COP will be held in Dubai, headed by an oil executive. More fossil fuel executives and lobbyists than world leaders will be attending.
“Fighting for a Green Future” is a film about 50 years of environment action. It will be shown on 8 December at the Tom Mann Theatre 136 Chalmers St, Surry Hills 6-9pm. For free tickets go to https://events.humanitix.com/fighting-for-a-green-future-exclusive-screening
NSW Plastics – next steps the NSW government is looking for feedback on what are the next steps to deal with plastics. Closing date 4 February 2024. For information and how to make a submission go to https://yoursay.epa.nsw.gov.au/plastics-paper
Home Waste the Ryde Council runs a free home waste and sustainability service to help make your house run more efficiently. To book go to https://www.ryde.nsw.gov.au/Environment-and-Waste/Sustainable-Living/Home-Waste-and-Sustainability-Advisory-Service
NEWS AND EVENTS
COP28 will be held soon. So why are fossil fuel lobbyists allowed to attend? Sign the petition to the UN
What happens when you put a fossil-fuel executive in charge of the talks? https://au.news.yahoo.com/inside-cop28s-big-experiment-happens-034132374.html
Major fossil fuel producers (including Australia) have not committed to reducing coal, gas and oil production according to a UN Environmnent Programme evaluation. https://cosmosmagazine.com/earth/fossil-fuels-governments-unep-overshoot/
Australia’s big four banks are still supporting fossil fuel projects. Read this report by Market Forces and then sign the letter asking for a halt to funding of fossil fuels. https://www.marketforces.org.au/big-four-banks-make-strides-but-action-still-dangerously-slow-in-a-climate-emergency/
Building a green economy here’s how to do it. An important article by Saul Griffiths https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/economy/2023/09/16/how-build-green-economic-boom
Capacity Investment Scheme will the federal government’s new scheme work? Perhaps. https://theconversation.com/the-government-will-underwrite-risky-investments-in-renewables-heres-why-thats-a-good-idea-218427
Australia’s Safeguard mechanism poised to fail because emitters can use the offset scheme. https://theconversation.com/the-unsafe-safeguard-mechanism-how-carbon-credits-could-blow-up-australias-main-climate-policy-213874
Are we finally seeing the beginning of the end of fossil fuels? A new IEA report suggests this may be the case.
Why our climate models may not be effective enough in analysing what’s happening in the polar regions. https://theconversation.com/luminous-mother-of-pearl-clouds-explain-why-climate-models-miss-so-much-arctic-and-antarctic-warming-217066
Great Koala National Park (GKNP) Work on this is progressing but there are concerns the government has reduced the size of the park without explanation. Write to the Premier asking logging to cease in the GKNP. https://www.koalapark.org.au/support-write
Logging in native forests why does NSW government continue the use our taxpayer money to fund a non-profitable industry? Read the report commissioned by NCC. https://assets.nationbuilder.com/natureorg/pages/2713/attachments/original/1699421741/23-11-02_Public_native_forestry_a_growing_taxpayer_burden_Final_report_STC_(1).pdf
Here’s a bunch of petitions to sign:
Stop a lead mine in NSW https://www.catefaehrmann.org/stop_lead_mine_wiping_out_koala_habitat
JERA (Japanese company) – stop fossil fuel financing https://www.marketforces.org.au/campaigns/asia/jera/
Whitehaven Coal is looking for foreign investment. Sign the letter asking US banks not to lend money https://www.marketforces.org.au/campaigns/companies/whitehaven-coal/
Heat – the big killer sign the letter asking your MP to adapt homes of vulnerable people to cope with the heat. https://parentsforclimate.good.do/climate-safe-homes/email-your-mp/
Restoring Ecosystems why it’s important https://theconversation.com/restoring-ecosystems-to-boost-biodiversity-is-an-urgent-priority-our-eco-index-can-guide-the-way-217092
Is it time to limit how often we fly? Is it time to have a carbon passport? https://edition.cnn.com/travel/carbon-passports-explainer/index.html
What we need in the environmental laws here’s five suggestions https://theconversation.com/5-things-we-need-to-see-in-australias-new-nature-laws-217271
EU to curb methane emissions Firms are to report emissions, find and fix leaks, and limit wasteful venting and flaring. This is what our federal government should be doing https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/nov/15/eu-agrees-law-to-curb-methane-emissions-fossil-fuel-industry
The antidote to despair is action Listen to Lesley Hughes, a climate scientist. https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/video/2023/nov/22/the-antidote-to-despair-is-action-lesley-hughes-on-motivation-through-a-climate-crisis-video
RECYCLING AND SUSTAINABILITY
Offshore wind farms and the campaign of misinformation to stop them being constructed.https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/nov/12/how-a-false-claim-about-wind-turbines-killing-whales-is-spinning-out-of-control-in-coastal-australia
Supermarkets and plastics how do they rate? Read the report and then sign the petition asking for a 20% cut in plastics by 2030. https://www.boomerangalliance.org.au/unwrapped_the_truth_about_supermarket_plastic
Microplastics how to stop them. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/nov/13/godfather-microplastics-richard-thompson-how-to-stop-them
Wind turbines how they can coexist with birds and bats https://knowablemagazine.org/article/technology/2023/how-wind-turbines-could-coexist-peacefully-bats-and-birds
Upparel is an organisation that can recycle and reuse textiles and some other hard-to-recycle textile products. See how it works at https://upparel.com.au/
Small modular nuclear reactor championed by the Federal Opposition now cancelled because it’s too expensive https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2023/nov/09/small-modular-nuclear-reactor-that-was-hailed-by-coalition-as-future-cancelled-due-to-rising-costs
Road building with recycled materials City of Sydney is using glass and used asphalt in road building. https://www.sustainabilitymatters.net.au/content/waste/news/sydney-street-refreshed-with-recycled-materials-414418307
Attracting wildlife Here’s some hints on how to make your garden attractive to native birds and animals. https://www.ryde.nsw.gov.au/Environment-and-Waste/Bushland-and-Wildlife/Attracting-Wildlife
Electric bikes and mopeds are having a significant effect (more so than EVs) in reducing oil demand. https://theconversation.com/the-worlds-280-million-electric-bikes-and-mopeds-are-cutting-demand-for-oil-far-more-than-electric-cars-213870
We are STILL waiting for fuel efficiency standards eight months after the federal government promised to pass laws to bring more low-emission standard vehicles to Australia https://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/frustration-over-delay-in-major-changes-that-could-affect-what-car-you-buy/1g9i8mxct