Newcastle, Sunday 2nd September 2007. Greenpeace activists enter the world's biggest coal port at Newcastle and paint the message "Australia Pushing Export Coal" on the side of a coal ship.The message was part of a peaceful protest to expose the Australian Government's real APEC agenda: to protect Australia's coal export industry by undermining the Kyoto Protocol.(c)Greenpeace/Morris.
UPDATE Sept 8th: APEC declaration a Sydney distraction from action on climate change
The Vienna climate change meeting agreed that a cut in
greenhouse gas emission in the range of 25-40 per cent below 1990
levels, by 2020 provides a useful initial parametre to set future
emission reductions by industrialised countries.
Despite the agreement, some countries were pushing for smaller
Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Russia and Switzerland tried to
introduce lower emission reduction ranges that, if adopted, would
lead to higher greenhouse gas levels, and a much greater risk of
dangerous climate change.
The positions supported by these countries could lead to a 4ºC
global mean temperature increase or higher.
To keep climate change from spiralling out of control, we need
to see emission cuts which keep global temperature rise as far
below 2ºC as possible, compared to pre-industrial levels.
Australia too has been trying to weaken global emissions targets
by refusing to ratify the Kyoto Protocol along with the US.
As the APEC meeting in Sydney began, Greenpeace activists warned
the many heads of state at the meeting of Australia's real climate
policy by painting the message "Australia Pushing Export Coal" in
two metre high letters along the side of a coal ship.
"Australia's climate policy is to 'Push Export Coal' and to hell
with the consequences for the planet," says Ben Pearson, Greenpeace
"Real action on climate change means moving away from coal and
shifting to clean, renewable energy - and we don't have the luxury
of time for expensive talk-fests that have no concrete
During week long APEC meeting, Australia will export more than
four million tonnes of coal, resulting in over 11 million tonnes of
CO2 emissions - equivalent to the annual emissions from 800,000
average Australian households.
Factoring in the costs of climate change impacts, as detailed in
the Stern Review, Australia's coal exports will result in more than
AUS$1.2 billion (US$1 billion) of damage during the APEC week
alone, and AUS$64 billion (US$52 billion) annually.
On the other side of the world more Greenpeace activists blocked
a Canadian coal shipment. The activists painted the words "No Coal.
No Nuclear. Clean Energy." on the freighter's hull to press
politicians in Ontario to commit to renewable sources of
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