State and federal governments lock Victoria into dinosaur technology

Friday, 3 August 2012

State and federal governments lock Victoria into dinosaur technology, undermine community opposition to new coal

The federal and Victorian governments have today announced they have established a $90 million fund for new brown coal projects in the Latrobe Valley.

“Last week the Victorian community received the welcome news that the federal Energy Minister had cancelled a $100 million grant to the proposed HRL coal-fired power plant in the Latrobe Valley” said Friends of the Earth campaigns co-ordinator Cam Walker.

“Today’s announcement is devastating news for Victorians and shows that both governments have failed to grasp the realities of climate change and the need to transition to renewable energy sources.”

“While community resistance to new coal and coal seam gas projects is becoming endemic across Gippsland, the state government has chosen to ignore community sentiment and announced it will contribute $45 million to pay for the development and rollout of brown coal technologies”.

“This is a massive lost opportunity. Instead of continuing to peddle the notion of ‘clean’ coal technologies, the government should be putting public funds into job rich renewable technology. The state government has shut off much of the state to wind energy, and refuses to listen to community concerns about coal and CSG. Having done a U Turn on climate action, it seems the government of Ted Baillieu is determined to take Victoria back into the 1950s by continuing to support the expansion of the obsolete brown coal industry.”

"It's not too late for the federal and state government's to do the right thing and support the Latrobe Valley. Gillard and Baillieu should redirect the fund towards helping the region transition to clean renewable energy."

Further comment: Cam Walker, 0419 338 047