Welcome to our May newsletter, full of radical news, updates and events from the many faces of FoE.
Don't hesitate to get in touch if you'd like to know more! [email protected]
Historic Victory: Judge forces Shell to drastically reduce CO2 emissions globally
You would have received our last email about the landmark Shell case brought forward by Friends of the Earth Netherlands (including 40+ Australian co-plaintiffs) where for the first time in history, a judge has held a corporation liable for causing dangerous climate change!
For anyone who missed it you can read the full story here.
Sam Cossar from Friends of the Earth Australia shares;
"This is a landmark victory for climate justice and will impact Shell’s operations globally, including here in Australia by requiring their business to be in line with global carbon targets. Our hope is that this verdict will trigger a wave of climate litigation against big polluters, to force them to stop extracting and burning fossil fuels."
Government has a duty to protect young people from climate crisis
The next historic case was brought forward by our member group School Strike 4 Climate Australia, where 8 students and a nun had a major win against the Federal Environment Minister. The Court ruling found that the Minister has a duty to protect young people from catastrophic climate harm!
“The court has found that the minister owes a duty of care to younger children, to vulnerable people, and that duty says that the minister must not act in a way that causes harm – future harm – from climate change to younger people,” he said outside court.
“It is the first time in the world that such a duty of care has been recognised, especially in a common law country.” Guardian story here.
This was just after there was more than 50,000 strikers in 50+ locations on May 21 with strikers across the continent striking against dangerous gas investment.
The strikers hit the streets to fight for a safe future where money is spent responsibly in renewables, jobs, and First Nations led solutions. #ClassAction4Climate
Sign Email to Voice Protection for Strzelecki Koala #HangInThereStrzKoala
SKAT has recently launched its latest petition calling on Environment Minister Sussan Ley to list the threatened and genetically diverse Strzelecki Koala under the EPBC Act.
Our latest koala surveys out of Won Wron and Mullungdung State Forest have revealed low koala numbers, most likely confirming estimates of a population size of 1,500-2,000 unique Strzelecki Koala's.
Can you help us to champion the importance of this particular koala and help us to sustain koalas in South-East Australia? Send an email today to Sussan Ley.
#GiveForOurFuture: Help health workers tackle climate change
We are mobilising health workers to reduce pollution and protect health.
This month we need to raise $5000 to help us expand our work in campaigning for climate action, so today we're asking if you can make a tax-deductible donation to our Chuffed crowdfunder.
We have a track record of success - we’ve supported hundreds of healthcare workers to advocate to their super funds to take action on climate change, and in 2020 we succeeded in convincing HESTA and Aware Super to divest from all companies that derive more than 15% of their revenue from thermal coal. Now we need your help to push Australia’s biggest climate polluter, AGL, to replace coal with renewables by 2030.
Climate solutions are health solutions.
Can you make a tax-deductible donation to help us reach our goal?
Court injunction stopped logging in Errinundra!
For nearly 4 months the community and supporters have stood their ground in Errinundra to protest the logging of critical unburnt forests. The logging machines have left, and with COVID-19 restrictions now in place, Camp Errinundra has decided to pack down.
Together, with all the public pressure, we got a temporary reprieve. This epic win belongs to you! But we still need your help.
Environment East Gippsland (EEG) went to court to halt logging in 'Alla Turca' coupe in Errinundra. Logging has stopped! And on Friday, all the machines left the area!!
Logging had only just started when an injunction came through! For the last month private security has been stationed there 24/7 to prevent community members and supporters from protesting the logging.
Thanks to the combined efforts of citizen scientists, EEG and their legal team, direct action and all the public pressure, the forests are safe for now!
But the fight is just beginning. We couldn't have done this without you! Will you donate to help keep the pressure up?
Federal Coalition continues it’s campaign against green groups
The federal Coalition has waged a long campaign against green groups. It has a long agenda to limit advocacy and has made many attempts to have the charity status of groups taken away (check here for some background on the earlier version of this campaign).
The current approach is to propose changes in regulations which would allow for the deregistration of charities in cases where staff commit a summary offence (the most minor of legal breaches).
The new regulations could, for example, allow a large charity like the St Vincent de Paul Society or UnitingCare to be stripped of charity status if one of their employees attends a protest and does not move on when directed by police.
The current government is once again proposing legislation aimed at silencing civil society from advocating. If the regulations are tabled we will need a massive mobilisation to stop them.
There is a good background story from The Guardian here.
FoE supports new ‘Our Democracy’ campaign to challenge corporations
Corporate influence is undermining our democracy. Powerful, harmful industries like gambling and fossil fuels are skewing our democratic processes to win political outcomes that put their profits ahead of our communities’ wellbeing. The grip that these industries have on power is blocking public interest reform on a large number of issues. It undermines community efforts to seek a safe climate and a fair society.
The #OurDemocracy campaign has been co-created by the Australian Democracy Network, the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Human Rights Law Centre with the input of experts and 30 diverse civil society organisations over the last 12 months.
FoE is proud to be involved in this new initiative.
The website can be found here.
WOTCH Volunteer Weekend - July 2021
Desperate to get back out to the forest? Because we are!
The WOTCH crew is happy to announce our first citizen science weekend of the year!
Over the course of the weekend, we will be retrieving/setting up camera traps; conducting different types of surveys including spotlighting, thermal camera imaging and stag watching. During these surveys, you will have the opportunity to explore the forest and may see some of Victoria’s threatened fauna including Leadbeater’s Possums and Greater Gliders.
Please keep in mind that surveys are often off-track (bush bashing) and a decent degree of fitness and ability to move through the forest is required, with that being said all are welcome and there will be something for everyone.
We'll be visiting the forests on the lands of the Taungurong and Woiworung people.
Specific details for this event will be distributed upon registration only - please register your interest via the following Google Form.
Stop Adani Roadshow 2021
Humanity WILL win against the bad guys!
From Wangan & Jagalingou to India and the Pacific - Indigenous people are coming together to shut down Adani's coal mine, once and for all!
Join Pacific Climate Warrior Jacynta Fa'amau at the launch of the next almighty people-powered push to stop the biggest climate-wrecking coal mine in Australia's history!
Book your spot in Sydney, Brisbane, Canberra, Cairns, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Coffs Harbour and more.
Community Powered Radio!
3CR's annual Radiothon runs throughout June, and in 2021 they're asking you to be part of 'COMMUNITY POWERED RADIO'.
It’s only with the financial support of the community that 3CR is able to be independent, community-controlled and focused on people rather than profits.
All Radiothon donations power the station to give voice to hundreds of people and issues for another year. We are especially grateful to have 3CR host our Friends of the Earth show "Dirt Radio" Tuesdays at 9am.
Any amount makes a big difference, and all donations over $2 are tax deductible. You can do that here.
Choose your Corporate Cane Toad!
In 1935, the toxic cane toad was artificially introduced into Australia. Backed by government and powerful companies, this damaging species was introduced to protect lucrative sugar crops from a beetle. This resulted in one of Australia’s worst environmental disasters, with cane toads destroying ecosystems and killing countless other species.
Now, many Australian corporations are implicated in violations of human rights and environmental destruction worldwide. Rainforest clearing, land grabbing, union-busting, water contamination, climate wrecking and the list goes on. Despite numerous reports and lawsuits, these corporations get away with it time and time again. They are becoming Corporate Cane Toads and should not be allowed to take over!
These nominees are implicated in violations against people and the climate with little to no accountability.
X ANZ - for financing climate-wrecking fossil fuels worldwide
X Rio Tinto - for causing destruction at home and overseas
X BHP - for its involvement in Brazil’s worst environmental disaster
X Mayur Resources - for its push to make PNG the first pacific country with a coal industry
X The JUST Group - for the lack of public support to garment workers through the COVID-19 crisis
X Resgen - for its attempt to build a coal mine in South Africa
Cane Toad Award - Awards night event in Melb
Then join Friends of the Earth Melbourne for a night of trivia and laughs as we expose the Corporate Cane Toads that are causing the climate crisis and award our inaugural #CaneToadAward, celebrate a radical history of resistance and raise funds for Friends of the Earth Melbourne's campaigns for social and environmental justice!
Vote, share, and shame these companies that are causing so much damage. The company with the most votes will be named the 2021 Corporate Cane Toad and referred to an international human rights complaint mechanism under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development rules on multinational enterprises.
And don't forget to book a table at the Cane Toad Awards Night!
Merch Store Back Up and Running!
Jump online to the FoE shop and get all the ethically sourced and locally made gifts for your friends and family, and also know that you are supporting the FoE family to keep fighting for social and environmental justice in 2021.
We post Australia-wide (although sending will be delayed if Vic lockdown continues).
Whilst you are here, please make a tax deductible donation. Friends of the Earth relies on donations from people like you to keep running campaigns for social and environmental justice.