October 2022 Newsletter

SOME GOOD THINGS HAVE HAPPENED Origin is pulling out of its Beetaloo Basin project; United Nations Human Rights Committee found that the Australian Government is violating its human rights obligations to Torres Strait Islanders by failing to act on climate change;  European Parliament vowed to limit destruction of the Earth’s forests by requiring banks and companies worldwide to ensure they are not involved in deforestation in order to do business in Europe; NSW the first state to treat carbon dioxide as a pollutant; Australian federal government has revamped Climate Change Authority to counter concerns about excessive business influence; Woodside has walked back from carbon capture and storage commitments for an offshore gas megaproject; Macquarie University has dropped Santos branding and support for a school science roadshow; AGL is set to announce the closure of two major coal-fired power plants in Victoria and NSW by 2035; Queensland announces 80% renewables target by 2035

CommBank  will be holding its AGM this week. Sign the letter asking they not fund fossil fuels. https://www.bankonourfuture.com.au/email-the-commbank-board/

Regenerating Australia is a short film by the team behind the documentaries 2040 and That Sugar Film. It is based on a four-month interview process with a diverse group of Australians who shared their hopes and dreams for the country’s future. Watch the trailer https://theregenerators.org/regenerating-australia/

Nature Conservancy has announced the winners of its photo competition. Have a look at the winning photos. https://www.natureaustralia.org.au/get-involved/take-action/photo-contest/

Koala Conference will be held in Coffs Harbour on 29 October. For information and to buy tickets go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/nsw-state-koala-conference-the-vanishing-tickets-410276537167

Solar gardens  Community Power Agency and its partners are launching a new project this month that will allow more people access to solar power for their homes. They will be holding online information sessions on 10 and 21 October. For information and to book go to  https://haystacks.solargarden.org.au/updates/#info-sessions

The upcoming budget  here’s some things the government could do to demonstrate it’s serious about climate change action.
Gas subsidies Ring the Treasurer and ask he not give $2bn in subsidies to gas companies in the October budget. Guidelines on what to say are here: https://act.350.org/signup/call_treasurer/  Alternatively (or as well) sign the petition https://www.getup.org.au/campaigns/climate-justice/reverse-morrison-s-gas-subsidies/scrap-morrison-s-gas-subsidies
$11.6bn dollars in fossil fuel subsidies last year. Here’s five suggestions of how the money could be better used.

Santos has announced it has secured further funding from a number of banks including NAB, Westpac, ANZ and CommBank. Sign the letter asking the banks to stop financing this company’s projects. https://www.marketforces.org.au/campaigns/companies/santos/#take-action-banks

Insuring coal mines Coal mining companies are now seeking to use an existing licence holder, the Australian Broker Network (ABN), to insure their projects.  Sign the letter asking ABN not to allow its licence to be used for these fossil fuel projects. https://www.marketforces.org.au/coal-miners-self-insure/

Commonwealth Government  still supporting the fossil fuel industry
Subsidies to fossil fuel companies are impeding a rapid move to renewables.  The Australian government, like so many others, is part of the problem. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/aug/31/fossil-fuel-subsidies-almost-doubled-in-2021-analysis-finds
Offshore oil and gas exploration licences Sophie Scamps MP, Senator David Pocock, Senator Whish-Wilson, Dr Monique Ryan MP, Kate Chaney MP, Adam Bandt MP, Zoe Daniel MP and Zali Steggall MP have all spoken against this proposal.  Sign the letter thanking them for their opposition to this reckless proposal https://wilderness.good.do/thanksfedpollies/aug2022/
Government is jeopardising  its own target. https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/politics/2022/09/03/how-labor-jeopardising-its-own-climate-target
We need a carbon tax not subsidies https://theconversation.com/taxes-out-subsidies-in-australia-and-the-us-are-passing-major-climate-bills-without-taxing-carbon-189555
Australia not doing its fair share to help poorer nations with climate change https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/sep/15/australia-is-funding-just-one-tenth-of-its-fair-share-of-global-climate-action-study-finds  Sign the petition asking the government to do more in the leadup to COP 27 https://actionaid.org.au/actions/climate-finance/
Australia should be aiming for net zero by 2040  https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/sep/17/australia-should-aim-for-net-zero-by-2040-new-climate-change-authority-member-says
Oil and gas companies in Australia want to be able to buy international offsets instead of reducing their emissions https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-09-28/oil-and-gas-industry-push-for-international-carbon-offsets/101479644
Small nuclear reactors being advocated by the Coalition would raise electricity prices, slow the uptake of renewables and introduce new risks from nuclear waste https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/oct/05/unproven-small-nuclear-reactors-would-raise-energy-costs-and-delay-renewable-uptake-report-says

Saving our native flora and fauna
A Green Wall Street concept
to save species is not the way to go.  Plibersek’s vision is wrong. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/sep/15/green-wall-street-in-australia-wont-save-the-planet-markets-value-profits-not-platypuses
Money allocated for saving species is woefully too little https://theconversation.com/labors-plan-to-save-threatened-species-is-an-improvement-but-its-still-well-short-of-what-we-need-191845
Feral deer are destroying our natural habitats. Sign the petition asking for more money to control their spread. https://invasives.org.au/how-to-help/take-action/sign-the-petition-feral-deer-gf/

Australia can be a major player in the world to deal with climate change
Australia is crucial to world decarbonisation  despite what the Coalition has told us in the past https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/irrelevant-to-global-decarbonisation-no-australia-s-crucial-to-it-20221003-p5bmnv.html
Battery storage sign the petition asking the federal government to make battery storage more affordable https://www.solarcitizens.org.au/storage_petition

Chile like Australia is facing some monumental environmental challenges because of its dependence on mining. A proposed change to the constitution will turn it into an ecological democracy.  https://theconversation.com/one-of-the-most-progressive-and-environmentally-conscious-legal-texts-on-the-planet-chiles-proposed-constitution-and-its-lessons-for-australia-189389

Solar was king
for a brief period in August in Australia https://arena.gov.au/blog/solar-edges-out-coal-in-historic-event/?

Solar energy saved Europe $29b this summer. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2022/10/solar-power-europe-energy-transition/

There’s a clean energy rush in Australia.  This is what you can expect to see. https://theconversation.com/good-news-theres-a-clean-energy-gold-rush-under-way-well-need-it-to-tackle-energy-price-turbulence-and-coals-exodus-188804

Places where you can recycle  takeaway coffee cups – Macquarie Centre Simply Cups stands; used makeup containers – Priceline

Disposable coffee cups it’s time they were phased out. Complete this very short survey by Boomerang Alliance https://www.boomerangalliance.org.au/coffee_cups_survey_2022

Electric utes Sussan Ley says no-one in the world is making electic utes.  She’s so wrong! https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-08-30/fact-check-sussan-ley-electric-ute/101386412

Street-side EV charging  ARENA is funding a pilot project for EV chargers to be attached to light poles. https://arena.gov.au/blog/ev-charging-stations-on-the-up/

Hybrids should not be part of the federal government’s plan to move to EVs because they need petrol https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/sep/21/labor-faces-electric-vehicle-roadblock-over-inclusion-of-hybrid-cars