Time for action is now

Press release - 2 September, 2010
An unlikely coalition representing millions of Australians has urged politicians from across the spectrum to put a price on pollution and take action on climate change. The joint statement to the Independent MPs and all political parties is supported by groups representing workers, the church, environmental and social justice groups and development NGOs.

"As Australia waits for a new Government, the opportunity is ripe for long awaited action on climate change," says Greenpeace CEO Linda Selvey. "There is support amongst the Independents, the ALP and the Greens, and many members of the Coalition for a price on pollution, and there is no question there is support from the electorate.

"It's not every day the Construction, Mining, Forestry and Engineering Union and Greenpeace appear in the same breath, but this just underscores how this issue crosses so many barriers. Climate change is not just an environmental issue. It is an economic, social, ethical, and public health issue. Whoever takes over the mantle of Australia's next Government must take true leadership on climate change," said Dr Selvey.

"A price on carbon is not all we need to do, but it is one of the most critical tools," says the Uniting Church's National Director of Justice, Elenie Poulos. "The environment is not merely a resource for us to plunder. It is a sacred gift from God and if we don't treat it as such, we risk the planet and our very own future.

"It is time for Australian governments at all levels to commit to working with business, industry, environment, community and faith groups for the sake of our planet and all its people. Our future depends on it," says Rev. Poulos.

Calling on the newly announced cross-party Climate Change Committee to put forward legislation in the next 12 months, Australian Conservation Foundation Climate Change Manager Tony Mohr says, "The majority of Australians, the majority of Parliamentarians, and a vast cross section of civil society know the time for talk is over. The next Australian Government must deliver action on climate change, or run the risk of destablising the Government."

The statement is endorsed by: 350.org, Australian Conservation Foundation, Australian Council of Social Services, ACTU, Australian Youth Climate Coalition, Climate Action Centre, Climate Action Network Australia, The Climate Institute, Climate Change Australia - Hastings, Climate Change Balmain-Rozelle, CFMEU, Environment Victoria, GetUp, Greenpeace Australia Pacific, Oxfam Australia, Terrain Natural Resource Management, Total Environment Centre, Uniting Church in Australia, World Vision Australia and WWF.

VVPR info:

Keiller MacDuff (Greenpeace) 0429033411

Tony Mohr (Australian Conservation Foundation) 0408806206

Tony Maher (CFMEU): 0418286735

Sacha Myers (World Vision Australia) 0457 926 018

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