The Greens in Palerang

Archive for February, 2013

Media conference transcript - Christine Milne and Larissa Waters

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Subjects: Warragamba Dam, climate change adaptation, National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF), coal seam gas

CHRISTINE MILNE: The Prime Minister’s announcements today concerning money to be spent on flood mitigation around the country demonstrates why we should have been dealing with climate change so much earlier. The reason that we are having so much Commonwealth money having to be invested in mitigation is the failure of both state and federal governments for a long period of time to listen to the scientists, to listen to Sir Nicholas Stern when he said the cost of not acting on climate change is going to far outweigh the cost of acting.

And that’s precisely what we are seeing. Since 2010 $6 billion has been spent in Australia trying to clean up after flooding, after extreme weather events. The Prime Minister’s statements today, the promise of extra money, the decision to put $50 million into the Warragamba dam and $50 million into other flood mitigation projects is couched in terms of insurance premium and cost of living. And it’s absolutely true that insurance premiums have gone through the roof in areas which are vulnerable to extreme weather events. What we need to do now is to recognise a) that we need to act on climate change and we need to maintain the National Climate Change Adaptation Research facility as a source of good information on which to make informed decisions about where best to spend the money so that we do protect communities into the longer term. It is essential that it’s not just the insurance industry dictating the terms, but that in fact that the science is in there so that people can make informed decisions and I’m calling on the Prime Minister to use some of that money to continue to fund the National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility so it can work in conjunction with communities in interpreting the climate models so that we get the best value for money and real resilience built into the system. The Insurance Council of Australia in its submission to the extreme weather events inquiry that I established said that we not only needed to invest in mitigation from flooding to bring down premiums but also we needed to harmonise land use planning. And also building codes because if you are really going to anticipate the consequences of extreme events you have to make sure that you upgrade the building coded, you have to make sure that planning permission is not being given to building areas that are vulnerable to flooding in the first place, and then money is available to assist people in whichever way you can. (more…)

National Parks hunting on hold as Game Council is reviewed

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

The Greens NSW have welcomed the announcement of a review of the governance of the Game Council and the suspension of hunting in national parks, calling on the government to take the next step and suspend hunting in state forests.

Greens NSW Environment spokesperson Cate Faehrmann said:

“The community will be very happy with this decision and will be desperately hoping that its more than a temporary reprieve. The deal to open parks to recreational hunters never had anything to do with genuine feral animal control and the public saw straight through the government’s spin.

“Hard battles have been fought over many decades for the declaration of national parks, reserves and state conservation areas for wildlife conservation. These battles were not fought to see them become play grounds for recreational hunting. The community has told the government loud and clear that they won’t stand for it,” Ms Faehrmann said. (more…)

Mining tax inquiry - win for transparency and win for community

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

The Australian Greens welcome the establishment of a Senate Inquiry into the mining tax.

“I am pleased that our motion to set up an inquiry into the design of the mining tax won the support of the Coalition and passed the Senate today.” Australian Greens leader Senator Christine Milne said today.

“This is a win for transparency, and a win for the community.  It’s about time Australians found out why the Gillard Government agreed to a dud mining tax, why the mining tax has failed to raise the billions that were promised, and how to fix it. (more…)

Media conference transcript - Christine Milne

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

Subjects: Coalition’s Direct Action plan, Newspoll, western Sydney, mining tax inquiry, asylum seekers

CHRISTINE MILNE: The Coalition is in a complete shemozzle over carbon pricing. Here we have Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott hurling a massive dose of uncertainty into the investment community and business community generally, and the wider community. Joe Hockey in Tasmania yesterday, telling Tasmanians that businesses would be compensated when the carbon price is removed because they know as well as the Greens know and the Government knows that the current Clean Energy Package is working, it’s reducing emissions, but more importantly it is driving the transition in the Australian economy. When Joe Hockey got to Tasmania he saw for the first time that there are people who desperately want the carbon price to stay in place. It leads to $70 million plus a year going into the Tasmanian economy and Tony Abbott is going to rip that out. And so Hockey turns up in Tasmania and says, ‘oh you will be compensated’, gets back to the mainland and Tony Abbott says ‘no you won’t be’. Now the Coalition really has to start coming clean with the Australian people and some scrutiny has to go on their complete joke of a policy when it comes to climate change. Their Direct Action plan is the same plan they took to the election in 2010, they haven’t changed a word virtually of the policy they had then. It did not stand up then and it doesn’t stand up now. What you’ve got on the one hand is saying Tony Abbott wants to pay the polluters out of the pockets of the taxpayer. (more…)

Greens amendments would retain fair access for smaller parties and Independents

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Labor’s moves to increase the nomination fee and the number of nominators required to register as a candidate would make it much harder for smaller parties and Independents to register and participate in elections and is therefore a risk to democracy, said Greens spokesperson for democracy Senator Lee Rhiannon who will move amendments in the Senate today.

The Electoral and Referendum Amendment (Improving Electoral Procedure) Bill 2012, being debated in the Senate this morning, seeks to double the nomination fee to $1,000 for a House of Representatives candidate and $2,000 for a Senate candidate and to increase the number of nominators required for an unendorsed candidate from 50 to 100. (more…)

Government ‘shooting-in-parks’ plan in disarray

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The following media release was issued today by Friends of Durras Inc.

The NSW Government’s plan to introduce shooting in NSW National Parks is in disarray, say members of the environmental lobby group Friends of Durras.
Friends of Durras spokesman John Perkins said that by announcing its intention to inject a whopping $19 million dollars toward implementing the plan, the NSW Government had committed yet another blunder and had clearly exposed the plan to be a dangerous and dodgy promise to the Shooters and Fishers Party in exchange for votes. (more…)

Books of Hope for children in detention

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The Australian Greens have launched a ‘Books of Hope’ drive today, calling for people all around the country to donate children’s books for refugee families in Manus Island and other detention centres.

“These children are living in terrible conditions and we need to do anything we can to improve their situation,” The Greens’ immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said.

“When I was on Manus Island last month, one of the many sad and disappointing things I realised was that the children there have no books to read and share with their families.

“The experts and Greens agree that no child should be locked up but the Labor Party continues to compete with Tony Abbott’s Liberals in a race to the bottom.

“The simple gift of a book will mean so much to the children who are being detained in island prisons. (more…)

Constitutional recognition of local govt referendum: inquiry evidence backs go ahead

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

With QLD Premier Campbell Newman writing to his fellow Premiers calling on them to support a referendum on constitutional recognition of local government at the upcoming election, and strong support from local councils around Australia, it is clear momentum is building for a referendum so this important level of government is recognised, says Australian Greens local government spokesperson Lee Rhiannon commenting on parliamentary committee hearings in Sydney today.

“Queensland Premier Campbell Newman’s enthusiasm for a referendum is matched by NSW and Queensland local councils which are strongly behind a referendum this year to provide financial certainty so key services can be delivered to local communities,” Senator Rhiannon said.

“There is broad support for the third sphere of government to be recognised in the Constitution to ensure the Commonwealth’s power to directly fund local government is legitimised. (more…)

Whaler’s refuelling threat grows as Government inaction continues

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

The Australian Greens have called on the Federal Government to immediately intervene and stop illegal refuelling of the Japanese whaling fleet in Australia’s Antarctic Territory as safety threats grow.

“I am writing to Minister Burke requesting that he urgently intervenes and orders the Japanese fleet to leave Australian waters, as well as dispatching a monitoring vessel immediately,” Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens marine spokesperson said today.

“There are reports that the whaling fleet and Sea Shepherd are operating in close proximity as the factory ship Nisshin Maru attempts to illegally refuel from the Korean-flagged Sun Laurel. (more…)

Immigration detention forcing children to despair

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Reports of children committing self-harm and attempting suicide in Australia’s immigration network are terribly disappointing, but not surprising, the Australian Greens said today.

“It is tragic that there is such cruelty in our immigration network that children are being driven to self-harm and attempted suicide,” the Greens’ immigration spokesperson, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said today.

“No child should be held in detention. The Greens actually listen to the experts when they say that children should not be locked up.

“We need to see a system put in place that will provide proper guardianship for unaccompanied children because it is obvious the Minister has forsaken these kids despite being their legal guardian.

“The AMA has referred to locking kids up in detention centres as child abuse and the Australian Government has to stop this dreadful practice.”

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Welcome to the website for the Greens in Palerang, who comprise the Braidwood Greens and some members of the Queanbeyan-Monaro Greens local groups. These groups run joint campaigns in the state seat of Monaro, and together with the Eurobodalla and Bega Greens groups, in the federal seat of Eden-Monaro.

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