Community to up the ante on MPs

\CommunityPlans have been revealed today for a national community backlash to anticipate weak emissions reduction targets in the Federal Government’s White Paper, due to be released early December.

Media Release

19th November 2008

Contact: Holly Creenaune: 0417 682 541

Community to up the ante on MPs

Plans have been revealed today for a national community backlash to anticipate weak emissions reduction targets in the Federal Government’s White Paper, due to be released early December.

The Canberra Times revealed today the Attorney-General's Department’s protective security coordination centre have warned Federal Parliament they face pre-Christmas protests in December when the Government announces Australia’s 2020 greenhouse emissions reduction target at the UN climate talks in Poland.

A network of community climate change groups, including Friends of the Earth, have decided to measure the Government’s climate responsibility based on whether they will commit in December that greenhouse gas emissions from Australia will begin to fall in 2010 – before the next Federal election.

If that commitment is not made, the groups plan to stage “sit-ins” in the offices of the MPs.

The protests are part of a growing urgency and frustration in the community that the Government seems determined to commit Australia to an emissions future that evidence suggests will destroy the Great Barrier Reef and have a dramatic impact on the lives of people in Australia and around the world.   

Holly Creenaune, of Friends of the Earth Australia said, “We are putting the Government on notice: we will not accept half measures on climate change. They must commit that emissions will start coming down in 2010 – before the next Federal election.”

“The Government faces a huge community backlash if they sell-out on the Reef, and the communities of the Pacific Islands who are already fleeing their homes. If they’re serious about climate change, why do we have to wait until 2012 for greenhouse pollution to start coming down?”

So far this month, more than 70 people have taken part in direct action against coal-fired power stations around Australia.    

Creenaune said, “We are calling on concerned citizens across the country to join this initiative and protest the Government’s failure to act in the public interest and start reducing greenhouse pollution. We simply won’t get another chance to avert global climate disaster.”

Further comment:
Holly Creenaune - 0417 682 541
Friends of the Earth Australia