Yesterday Prime Minister Gillard unveiled the new clean energy plan for Australia, that Parliament will vote on later this year. There’s money for renewable energy technology and innovation, a price on carbon pollution and a new independent authority to lift climate policy above the political fray. Check out the details and analysis from experts here.
Right wing politicians and polluter lobbyists are in a frenzy. They’re desperate to scare the public in order to break the fledgling agreement in Canberra for a clean energy future. Millions of Australians will make up their mind in these first 48 hours. Our challenge is to counter the distortions from conservative media and the big polluters before they hijack the debate.
As a first step, we’ve put together a simple animation that explains how the new plan works. Can you take a moment to pass it on to your friends, colleagues and family?
As late as a few weeks ago a credible outcome was still uncertain. Thankfully, this plan has come along way! While it isn’t perfect, there’s a lot in this package that we can all be proud of:
– $2 billion per year for investment in clean energy at an industrial scale, and a $3.2 billion fund to support innovation, job creation, research and development for renewables;
– An independent body, the Climate Change Authority (CCA), headed by former Reserve Bank Governor Bernie Fraser, to take the politics out of climate change by setting emission reduction targets for Parliament to approve;
– Funding to close down 2,000 megawatts of coal fired power stations – meaning we can finally close the dirtiest coal fired power stations in the country;
– $1 Billion over six years to help our environment adapt to the impacts of climate change and to reduce our emissions by protecting forests from logging and establishing green corridors for our native wildlife; and
– Lifting Australia’s 2050 emission reduction target from 60% to 80%.
While the investment in renewable energy and the closure of coal fired power stations is fantastic, many are not over the moon about the level of assistance that’s been given to big industry. Thankfully, that money is only guaranteed for five years and will be reviewed in 2014.
All in all this proposal is a major leap forward–but it won’t come easy.
We know the right wing press machine will continue relentlessly to hammer away without regard to the facts. And the Australian Coal Association and the Minerals Council of Australia are already rushing forward a multi-million dollar smear campaign to confuse and frighten voters. Their advertisers plan to drive down polling numbers and scare the Parliament into diluting or abandoning the climate proposal before it comes to a vote later this year. Their lobbyists plan to slip amendments into the scheme, and to scare MPs into abandoning their support.
As fear campaigns flood the airwaves and well-heeled lobbyists roam the halls of Parliament, the passage of this plan into law will depend on whether regular Australians can keep the debate honest in our own communities.
So please take a moment right now to view and share this animated explanation. Let’s give the facts a head start:
Our ultimate goal remains an economy powered by 100% clean, renewable energy. And if it passes Parliament later this year, the plan will represent the greatest single step forward for Australia’s climate movement. And that’s worth fighting for.
Thanks for all you do,
the GetUp Team
PS – This historic proposal rests on a fragile political agreement between two parties and three independents. If even one MP caves in the coming months, all could be lost. That’s why the fossil fuel lobbyists and their allies are throwing millions of dollars into a no-holds-barred attack to derail the plan. And it’s why we must begin our campaign today: http://www.getup.org.au/watchtheclimatevideo.