Jul 28, 2016
New federal energy and environment minister Josh Frydenberg has indicated a significant shift in energy policy for the Coalition. Minister Frydenberg has said that more renewable energy will be required with the decline of coal.
The minister has also called for more gas supplies and suppliers and for gas moratoria to be removed.
Friends of the Earth are encouraged by the positive rhetoric on renewable energy but urge the new minister to support bans on risky onshore gasfield development.
“Mr Frydenberg correctly notes that renewables are not to blame for recent high electricity prices in South Australia” said Cam Walker of Friends of the Earth Australia.
Jul 25, 2016
A new report by Friends of the Earth International demonstrates how Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) and Coal Chemical technologies threaten to destabilise the earth’s climate and irreversibly damage local environments.
The report, launched today, comes in the wake of UCG being banned in Queensland, Australia. There is interest in and development of UCG in Europe, Russia, Canada, the US, China and India. It is currently under moratorium in Scotland.
Jul 21, 2016
GM-Free Australia Alliance members reject the Productivity Commission’s recommendations to remove states’ rights to ban genetically manipulated (GM) crops for marketing reasons and to remove GM food labelling. GM crops pose unacceptable risks to our health, the environment and key export markets and removing the bans and GM labeling would eliminate choice for farmers and consumers.
Louise Sales from Friends of the Earth’s Emerging Tech Project says: “The Productivity Commission has ignored the compelling evidence from the Tasmanian and South Australian Governments, and other stakeholders, that show the value of remaining GM-free. Instead its report reads like a Monsanto press release.”
Jun 17, 2016
Friends of the Earth is a founding member of the TPP Unions and Community Roundtable. We are committed to preventing the ratification of the TPP, and work with a variety of politicians, unions, community groups and individuals in order to achieve this goal.
In order to accurately score politicians on their commitment to disabling the TPP, the following two questions were emailed to all parties and independents currently holding seats in the upper or lower house:
Jun 10, 2016
In the lead-up to the Bendigo in a Warming Future forum, which will be held in Bendigo on June 15, a fieldtrip hosted by local ecologists highlighted the impacts of climate change which are already being felt in northern Victoria.
Warning on local climate
Climate change is already taking its toll locally. During a field trip to Bell Swamp and Mount Alexander on Friday, local ecologists pointed out examples of the impact on the region’s ecology.
Examining a large group of dead Grey Box at Bell Swamp, located to the north west of Maldon, Damien Cook, ecologist with Rakali Consulting said, “trees die all the time and it's a natural occurrence, but so many dying at once indicates environmental change. These trees were aged between 300 and 500 years and had lived through countless floods and droughts. They’ve died as a consequence of recent extreme weather events – the millennium drought followed by the massive flood of 2011”.
May 18, 2016
Wednesday, 18th May 2016
Independent testing commissioned by Friends of the Earth US has found risky nanoparticles deemed unsafe for use in toothpaste in baby formula. Six samples of baby formula made by Gerber®, Enfamil®, Similac® and Well Beginnings™ - which are all available online in Australia - were tested. Four of the samples contained nanoparticles of hydroxyapatite. Furthermore, 100 per cent of the hydroxyapatite particles in the samples were nano - demonstrating conclusively that they were intentionally produced (1).
The European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety (SCCS) concluded that the needle-like form of nano-hydroxyapatite found in Gerber® Good Start Gentle®, Well Beginnings™ Advantage®, and Enfamil® formulas, which is similar in shape to asbestos, is potentially toxic and should not be used in toothpastes, tooth whiteners and mouth washes.
May 04, 2016
The long awaited final report from the House of Representatives Inquiry into environmental organisations has now been released. Many in the community had anticipated that the report would recommend changes that would severely limit the activities of environmental groups. Sadly, this is the case.
For background on this report and the political agenda against the environment movement, please check here.
The report acknowledges that environment groups are doing an important and necessary job in protecting our precious environment. However, it contains a number of deeply flawed recommendations, which if implemented would profoundly change the environmental protection movement in Australia.
Apr 29, 2016
Friends of the Earth Brisbane applauds the federal government decision to drop 5 sites, including one in Queensland, from its list of sites nominated to house national nuclear waste. We now call on the government to remove the final site, Barndioota station, in SA from consideration and to drop the flawed site selection process immediately.
After announcing a list of 6 proposed sites in November, 2015, the federal government will reportedly announce that a site in South Australia is the only site short-listed to house a new national nuclear waste repository. The proposed site in Queensland, at OmanAma, near Inglewoood on the Darling Downs, and 4 other nominates sites in NSW, SA and NT are reported to have been dropped from the list.
Calls for international moratorium on underground coal gasification following immediate ban in Queensland, Australia
Apr 18, 2016
APRIL 18, 2016: Responding to the breaking news that the State Government of Queensland in Australia has just implemented an immediate ban on all underground coal gasification in that State, Chloe Aldenhoven, Coal and Gas Spokesperson for Friends of the Earth (FoE) Australia said:
"These kind of radical and dangerous mining techniques show the desperation of a fossil fuel industry going into decline.
“We need an international moratorium on this madman technology before it inflicts any more damage on people and the environment."
“As they anticipate the inevitable transition to renewable energy, mining companies are inflicting increasingly reckless and environmentally damaging mining techniques on communities.
Jan 08, 2016
The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a secret trade agreement that will adversely affect the environment, worker’s rights, cost of medicines, internet freedoms, food safety, intellectual property rights and indigenous rights.
Friends of the Earth Australia (FoEA) has long warned that the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) chapter in the TPP agreement will potentially allow corporations to override our domestic laws and enable foreign corporations to sue our Government if we implement policy and legislation that may impact the ‘future profitability’ of a corporation.
FoEA campaigner Cam Walker said "Tobacco giant Phillip Morris has already launched a lawsuit against the Australian government in relation to the introduction of plain-packaging laws. Thankfully this was not successful. However, the TPP could open the door to similar lawsuits under the TPP ISDS clause".