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Greens now only opposition to Liberals on climate change: Bandt

19/08/19

Greens climate change spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, has responded to The Australia Institute report which highlights Australia’s role as a global pollution leader, as well as recent statements from Liberals and Labor endorsing coal and refusing to sign the Pacific Islands statement, saying the Greens are now the only party willing to take on the coal mafia and protect our way of life.  
 
“The Arctic is burning and Australia is in record drought, yet Labor has backed the Liberals on coal,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“If Labor isn’t going to take the fight up to this government of climate criminals, they should get out of the way and the let the Greens be the real opposition.
 
“Last week, Scott Morrison bullied and bribed his way out of any meaningful climate commitment but Labor then backed his refusal to sign the Pacific Islands statement on coal.
 
“As hundreds of thousands of people take to the street in September ahead of the United Nations climate meeting, the pressure will grow on Labor and Liberal to shift on coal.
 
“Coal is a leading cause of climate change. Recent research highlights that Australia is the third biggest exporter of coal and ranks fifth for responsibility for carbon emissions from fossil fuels.  
 
“Shamefully, when it comes to pollution, Australia punches well above its weight.
 
“If you don’t have a plan to phase out coal you don’t have a plan to tackle climate change.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Morrison's 'coal shoulder' to Pacific won't work on world stage: Bandt

Greens climate change and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, has responded to the final communique from the Pacific Island Forum, warning Scott Morrison that his bully-boy act of giving the Pacific the coal shoulder won’t work when Australia fronts the UN global climate summit in New York next month.
 
“Prime Minister Scott Morrison may have shouldered coal off the Pacific Islands’ Forum agenda, but his bully boy tactics won’t work on the world stage,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“Scott Morrison has demonstrated that he is the biggest enemy the Pacific has ever had.
 
“When your neighbour’s house is on fire you help them put it out, you don’t throw petrol on it.
 
“No wonder the Pacific is looking towards China. Australia’s addiction to coal is jeopardising our neighbours in the Pacific and is undermining our working relationship with them.
 
“This week, not only has Scott Morrison refused to commit to phasing out coal, he has bullied and bribed his way to ensuring the final communique is weaker on climate than the science requires and makes no mention of coal.
 
“Scott Morrison had to grudgingly concede some reference to the science in the final communique, but all week he made it clear he’d rather burn more coal and send his co-signatories’ countries underwater.
 
 “Already more than 20,000 Australians have added their voice to our campaign calling for Parliament to declare a climate emergency. Parliament needs to shake some sense into this government, and that starts by telling the truth.
 
“Pacific leaders are facing the climate crisis every day. They live the extreme reality of the emergency we all face, yet Scott Morrison refuses to accept and declare a climate emergency.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Prime Minister's accounting tricks won't solve climate emergency: Greens

13/08/19

The Prime Minister is an enemy of the Pacific, said Australian Greens climate and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, ahead of the upcoming meeting of leaders at the Pacific Islands Forum in Tuvalu.
 
“The Prime Minister feigns friendship, but his expansion of coal mining makes him the biggest enemy the Pacific has ever had,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“Pacific Island leaders are pleading with Australia to get out of coal, but the Prime Minister is giving them the middle finger. 
 
“Their islands, including Tuvalu, face extinction because of the climate crisis and coal is the biggest cause of climate change.

“When the Prime Minister visits our Pacific Island neighbours, he goes to their churches but he sends them to hell.

"Scott Morrison can't bribe his way out of the Pacific's climate crisis by repackaging existing foreign aid money.

“Only this week the United Nations has said the Paris goals of keeping warming well below 2 degrees to limit the existential threat of climate change are not being reached.

“Inadequate Paris commitments from countries like Australia mean we’re currently on track for 3.5 degrees of warming, which means the end of many Pacific Island nations. 

“Our coal-hugging Prime Minister continues to preside over a government bent on expanding the mining and burning of coal, yet he expects a hero’s welcome from the Pacific leaders on Thursday.
  
“If Scott Morrison wants to earn the respect and friendship of the Pacific, he needs to lift Australia’s climate targets and begin to phase out coal.”

The Prime Minister is using dodgy accounting tricks to make it look like he’s serious about combatting climate change in the Pacific without actually doing anything to address its root cause - our addiction to fossil fuels - Leader of the Australian Greens Dr Richard Di Natale said.

“Not only is Scott Morrison refusing to heed our Pacific neighbours’ calls to end our love affair with coal, he’s also refusing to give Australia’s fair share of development assistance funds so the Pacific can respond to the threat of climate change,” Leader of the Australian Greens Dr Richard Di Natale said.
 
“This $500 million isn’t new, it’s a dodgy accounting trick that does nothing more than move money about within our already scandalously small aid budget. Our Pacific neighbours are on the frontlines of the climate emergency, but instead of taking genuine action to stop global warming at the source - ending the digging up and burning of fossil fuels - we get the same old smoke and mirrors from the Coalition.”  
 
“As a developed nation and a significant contributor to global warming, Australia should be helping our neighbours with additional climate funding, not playing a pea and shell game with our foreign aid budget.  

NOTE: A conservative analysis by Climate Action Tracker of present policies, including Australia’s, has the world heading towards 3.5 degrees, which would be a catastrophe for the Pacific and the world.



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054
DI NATALE - Matt Siegel; 0457 901 600

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Government should listen to the RBA and boost public servants wages by at least 3%: Bandt

09/08/19

Greens public sector spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, has called on the government to boost public sector wages by more than 3% after he questioned the RBA Governor during hearings of the Economics Committee today.
 
The Australian Greens want an annual pay rise of 4% per year for non-executive public servants for the next four years to boost the wages of low paid public sector workers and lift wages across the economy.
 
“The Reserve Bank has outlined the threats to economy from low wages growth and the government now needs to act to boost public sector wages,” Mr Bandt said.
 
“The Liberals’ 2% pay cap isn’t just hurting public servants, it’s a threat to the economy.
 
“The Reserve Bank Governor, in evidence to the Committee today, has said that we need wages growth of over 3% and that public sector wage outcomes are influencing private sector outcomes.
 
“The Governor also told the committee that lifting Newstart would lead to a rise in aggregate demand.
 
“To stimulate wages across the economy, the federal government should commit to the Greens’ plan for an annual 4% wage increase for public servants.”
 
“By reining in the use of consultants, the cost of funding a wages boost could be offset.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Greens will move to block government funding of Liddell coal-fired power station: Bandt

09/08/19

Following Energy Minister Angus Taylor’s announcement of a taskforce to consider propping up the Liddell coal-fired power station, Greens climate change and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, has vowed the Greens will block any public money being used to keep the coal-fired power station open longer. The station is scheduled for closure in 2022/23, but Minister Taylor this morning refused to rule out using public money to support Liddell and keep it open longer.
 
“The coal-loving bullies in the government are slowing down the transition to renewables,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“Angus Taylor has refused to rule out using public money to extend the life of an ageing and decrepit coal fired power station.”
 
“If Angus Taylor wants to drive down prices and do his job as the supposed ‘Emissions Reduction Minister’, he must stop his meddling in AGL and instead support a just transition to renewables.”  
 
“The Greens’ Coal Fired Power Funding Prohibition Bill will block any taxpayer money going to Minister Taylor’s crazy coal crusade.”
 
“These power stations are clapped out, unreliable and increasingly broken steam engines. We need investment in new, clean generation like wind and solar and a grid to support, them not the propping up of last century’s clunkers.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Latest IPCC report a giant SOS for our forests and land: Greens

08/08/19

Greens climate and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, has said the latest IPCC climate report released today is a giant SOS for our forests and land, particularly in Australia.
 
The IPCC’s Climate Change and Land: an IPCC special report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems report released in Geneva says that reforestation, protection of forests and a shift away from unsustainable intensive farming systems is critical to solving the climate crisis.
 
According to the report, 72% of the planet’s ice-free surface is now used to feed, clothe and support Earth’s growing population and agriculture, forestry and other land use produces almost a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions driving the climate emergency.
 
While Australia is particularly vulnerable to desertification and other impacts of the climate crisis discussed in the report, it is also engaged in many of the damaging land use practices contributing to global heating.
 
Comments attributable to Adam Bandt MP:
 
“This is an SOS from the world’s scientists about the climate emergency.”
 
“Australia is in the middle of the worst drought in Australian history and this will only get worse if we don’t listen to the warnings in this report.”
 
“Unsustainable land clearing and the logging of our native forests must end, and we must plan a path towards a zero emission farming future if we are to have a chance of avoiding catastrophe.”
 
“One glimmer of hope in this report is that farmers can be part of the solution, and that we can simultaneously improve water efficiency and soil fertility while sequestering carbon from the atmosphere if we get the policies right. 
 
“Australian farmers are experiencing the climate crisis right now and they need to be supported to make the transition.”
 
“This report comes just after the hottest global month on record. The records tumbling one after another are a sounding out death knell for civilisation unless we act.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Public Servants Need Free Speech Protections

08/08/2019

Greens public sector spokesperson Adam Bandt has responded to the High Court’s decision in Comcare v Banerji, saying the law may need to change to ensure freedom of speech.
 
“The Greens are deeply concerned about the impacts of this decision,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“This threatens public servants’ ability to participate in modern life.
 
“Free speech must be protected and if we now have to change the law to ensure public servants can have a private life while still being apolitical at work, we should look at that. 

“To ensure an apolitical public service that can deliver frank and fearless advice in the best interest of our democracy, we need to promote a diversity of voices in our public service.
 
“We can have both a non-partisan public service and freedom of speech. 
 
“Australian public servants deserve normal rights as citizens, instead of draconian social media guidelines that limit freedom of speech and don’t allow for any diversity of opinion.
 
“Right now, as media offices are raided and whistleblowers are targeted, it’s never been more important to establish an Australian Bill of Rights to protect our rights and our democracy.”

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COALITION FINGERPRINTS ALL OVER WIND FARM LAWSUITS: GREENS

COALITION FINGERPRINTS ALL OVER WIND FARM LAWSUITS: GREENS

Greens climate change and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt, responded to the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) announcement that they will launch legal action against four wind farm operators over the 2016 South Australian blackout, saying the regulator needed to explain why only a few months ago it investigated the blackout, found that breaches of the market rules did not contribute to the event and advised it would not take companies to court.

“The AER shouldn’t be doing the Coalition’s dirty work,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“In its investigation into the blackout last December, the AER declared that ‘we do not intend to take formal enforcement action in respect of these matters.’ Yet just over six months later they’ve launched legal action.  
 
“Energy Minister Angus Taylor, a known wind-farm opponent, needs to come clean on what role he has played in facilitating this complete about-face from the AER.
 
“Ageing coal-fired power stations are regularly failing in the heat and they get off scot-free, but wind farms get taken to court by the very same body that investigated and cleared them just a few months ago.
 
“According to The Australia Institute, Australia has experienced 195 coal and gas breakdowns since December 2017, but the Minister and his regulators turn a blind eye to fossil fuel failures.”
 
From the official investigation by AER (Black System Event Compliance Report released 14 December 2018):

  • “Overall, the investigation found a high level of compliance by market participants with their obligations. However there were instances in which obligations were not complied with. The AER considers the breaches found did not contribute to the state going black, and that all core obligations were met”

 

  • It goes on to say (in the detailed report): “While we have found some areas of non-compliance with administrative requirements in the Rules, we do not intend to take formal enforcement action in respect of these matters, as we consider that it would be more effective to focus on remedial recommendations for improved processes. Further, we have noted the unprecedented circumstances as part of our consideration of all the available information.”


Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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More gas won't fix energy problems: Bandt

06/08/19

Australian Greens climate change and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt, responded today to the push from Federal Energy Minister, Angus Taylor, for Victoria to lift its onshore gas moratorium, saying more gas won’t fix Australia’s energy problems and will make climate change worse.
 
“While renewables are pulling electricity costs down, gas is driving costs up,”  said Mr Bandt.
 
“Lifting the fracking ban in Victoria will just see more gas sold offshore to the highest bidder while making global warming worse.”
 
”By investing in more renewables and supporting industry and households to switch from gas to electricity, we can cut pollution and solve the ‘gas problem’, caused by the old parties handing over our gas to the fossil fuel giants to export overseas.”
 
“Gas isn’t a transition fuel. It’s a polluting fossil fuel that will blow out Australia’s carbon emissions and heat our planet further.”
 
“Daniel Andrews must hold firm against the Canberra fossil fuel bullies and keep Victoria’s fracking ban in place.”



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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Real fuel security means decarbonising our economy: Bandt

05/08/19 

Greens energy spokesperson Adam Bandt has responded to the announcement that Australia is looking to access millions of barrels of oil from the United States’ Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
 
“If we want to take real action on fuel security, we need to look past fossil fuels and instead get serious about embracing electric vehicles,” said Mr Bandt.
 
“Instead of acting to drive the shift to electric vehicles, the government spent the last election running a scare campaign.”
 
“Just like its failure to act on climate change, the government’s continued failure on fuel is threatening Australia’s security.”
 
“The only way to ensure long term energy transport security for Australia is to decarbonise our economy with investment in electric vehicles and zero carbon public transport, like high speed rail.”
 
“The Greens have a plan to ensure 100% of new passenger vehicles are electric by 2030.” 



Media Contacts:
BANDT - Fiona Canny; 0429 109 054

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