June 2016 Newsletter

We held a successful showing of the documentary “This Changes Everything” at Ryde Library on 26 June with 20 people attending. We are considering showing other documentaries later in the year and will let you know when that will happen.

Parties and their policies ACF (Australian Conservation Foundation) has put together a scorecard for the major parties on their stand on climate change. https://www.acfonline.org.au

Where do the parties stand on solar? Want to know where the candidates in your electorate stand on solar? Bennelong electorate ranks135 out of 150 federal electorates. Have a look at Solar Citizen’s website http://solarscorecard.org.au/

ARENA This organisation, which has lost over a billion dollars worth of funding from the Federal Government, has invested in some interesting projects around the country.  Read the story and be inspired by what innovation looks like.

Fossil fuel donations and subsidies Bill McKibben, the founder of 350.org has written of the importance of the ending of these to give a chance of Australia moving towards renewable energy.  https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/opinion/topic/2016/04/16/the-links-between-big-polluters-and-politicians/

ACT to go 100% renewable The ACT has announced that it will go 100% renewables by 2020. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/act-commits-to-100-per-cent-renewable-energy-target-by-2020-simon-corbell

Biodiversity Legislation The Baird Government is proposing new laws that will weaken the laws that protect our natural environments and will lead to large scale land clearing and the possibility of many endangered animals in NSW becoming extinct. It will also make it more difficult for Australia to reach its carbon reduction targets.We strongly suggest you make a submission asking that this legislation not go ahead.  It’s simple and doesn’t have to be long.  Go to Nature Conservation Council’s website for info and the link to do the submission. Closing date is 28 June. http://www.nature.org.au/campaigns/nature-laws/

Senate inquiry on CSG The Senate enquiry into CSG and unconventional gas mining has released a preliminary report that recommends the Federal Government bans fracking. The mining industry is not pleased. http://www.miningweekly.com/article/aus-govt-must-ban-fracking-report-2016-05-05

Map of coal and CSG mining Have a look at this interactive map and see how where you live or the source of your drinking water may be affected by fossil fuel mining. http://www.lockthegate.org.au/australian_mining_map?

Australian Super This superannuation fund has annnounced it will offer its members an option that is divested from companies with fossil fuel reserves. http://superswitch.org.au/divestment/australiansuper-makes-a-start-on-fossil-fuel-divestment/

Banks fossil fuel free in 5 years? The big four banks are exposed to coal through their loan books.  If each bank simply allowed their current coal loans to mature, without refinancing or making any new deals, they would have virtually zero debt exposure to the industry by early 2021. http://www.marketforces.org.au/coal-free-in-five-years/

Coral Bleaching in Great Barrier Reef Have a look at this video,see the damage to the Great Barrier Reef and share it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ylu5YFExjcc

Divestment news The Bill and Melinda Foundation have divested its entire $187million investment in BP.  Since 2014 it has dropped 85% of such investments. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/12/bill-and-melinda-gates-foundation-divests-entire-holding-in-bp

Countries running on renewables Portugal and Germany have recently been running purely on renewable energy. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/18/portugal-runs-for-four-days-straight-on-renewable-energy-alone

Vivid goes carbon neutral The Vivid Event in Sydney is carbon neutral. Read how it was done. http://www.sustainabilitymatters.net.au/content/sustainability/news/sails-light-up-at-carbon-neutral-event-in-sydney-916568592

Water4Life  The Labor Party has committed to Lock the Gate’s campaign which calls for the impacts of shale and tight gas mining on water sources to be assessed. The Federal Government is yet to do so. Sign the petition asking for no-go zones from coal and gas mining. http://www.lockthegate.org.au/lp2_our_water_our_health

Clean power company Want to change to a 100% clean energy supplier? Then check out this guide. http://greenelectricityguide.org.au/

Australian Government and the UN report You probably didn’t hear this on the news but the Federal Government forced the UN to remove all mention of Australia (and therefore the Great Barrier Reef) from a report on the effects of climate change.http://http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/may/27/australia-scrubbed-from-un-climate-change-report-after-government-intervention

Break free action View the video of actions taken around the world during May calling for governments to stop supporting the fossil fuel industry. Be inspired https://www.facebook.com/350.orgAustralia/videos

What’s on
Meet the candidates
Ryde Flora and Fauna Society is running a forum on 18 June at the Education Centre in the Field of Mars (off Pittwater Road) Gladesville from 2.30 to 3.45pm where you can ask candidates for the seat of Bennelong about their stand on climate change. Gold coin donation welcome. For more information go tot rhhffps@gmail.com

Protest to save biodiversity Mike Baird’s government is planning to scrap important tree clearing and nature protection laws that will push many of the 1000 endangered animals in NSW including the koala closer to the brink if extinction.  Stand up for Nature is organising a  demonstration outside his electoral office at 2 Wentworth St, Manly on 24 June at 11am. For more info http://www.standupfornature.org.au/no_more_tree_clearing_rally

Kayaking for the Pacific Islands 350.org is organising an event  to highlight the plight of the Pacific Islands threatened by climate change.  There will be kayakers travelling from Parramatta to Red Leaf Beach during the week before the election.  The final stage will be on 25 June from Blues Point Reserve to Red Leaf Beach, just down the road from Malcolm Turnbull’s residence. To participate register at http://gofossilfree.org.au/mana-moana

Rally in Turnbull’s electorate Malcolm Turnbull has failed to announce any major plans to tackle climate change.  Wilderness Society is organising a rally on Sunday 26 June at 11am at Steyne Park, Double Bay to send a message to the PM that strong action is required. http://wilderness.nationbuilder.com/malcolm_fizza_rally

Environment Day Ryde Council will be running its World Environment Day on Sunday 26 June at Darvall Park,Chatham Road, Denistone 10am -4pm. This is the event which was postponed on 5 June due to the stormy weather. Lots of activities for family. For more information contact Ryde Council on Phone: (02) 9952 8222