The Rocky Road to Copenhagen

The rocky road to Copenhagen

While here in Victoria we’ve been coping with heatwaves and preparing for the fire season ahead, our world leaders are trying to prepare us for their potential failure on climate change in a few weeks time at Copenhagen.

Last week, world leaders at the APEC regional forum in Singapore, including our own Prime Minister Kevin Rudd conceded that the international climate negotiations to be held in Copenhagen next month will deliver no more than a ‘political framework’ for future action on climate change.

In place of a deal that would effectively form the next Kyoto, they are offering very little.  No deal.  No treaty. Just a ‘political framework’ for future action.

This is simply not a good enough response from those who seek to lead us through this climate crisis.  Our Prime Minister, and our world leaders have a responsibility to act on our behalf.  They have a responsibility to make the hard decisions in order to ensure that we can achieve a safe climate future.

Last weeks lowering of expectations is disappointing, but we cannot let them get away with it.

Australians want action on climate change, and we’ll continue calling on our politicians to show real leadership for our future.

That’s why we’re holding the Walk Against Warming again this year.  It’s more important than ever.  In the middle of one of the most important meetings of all time, we’ll be gathering to send world leaders a message they can’t ignore.  That same day, hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of people will be gathering all over the world to show that communities are ready for real action on climate change.

Please RSVP at and help us spread the word.  We need your help to gather tens of thousands of people on December 12th, to show that Victorians are part of this important global call for action.

Meanwhile, back at home…

The Brumby Government is still considering proposals to allocate even more brown coal to polluters, and to begin exporting coal to the developing world.  If these proposals go ahead, the greenhouse emissions from the projects would be equal to 20 years worth of Australia’s total emissions.

For more about the dirty coal proposals, CLICK HERE.

We’re following up on these proposals, and will be meeting with a number of Cabinet Ministers over coming weeks to discuss our concerns.  In the meantime, we really need your help.

A number of you have already sent an email or letter to key Cabinet Ministers outlining your concerns about Victoria’s coal addiction.

If you haven’t yet sent an email, please do it now.  It’s easy – just CLICK HERE and enter your details to send an email calling for a clean energy future.   With your emails in front of them, and Environment Victoria sitting opposite, our Cabinet Ministers will get the message loud and clear that the community doesn’t support these proposals for even more coal, and that we’re calling for a transition to a clean energy future.

To send your email now, CLICK HERE.

Solar feed-in fiasco continues

Two weeks ago, the Victorian Government finally introduced Victoria’s net feed-in tariff.  Environment Victoria welcomed the long awaited introduction of the tariff, despite the fact that the model chosen by the government falls short of what is really needed to provide a strong incentive to invest in solar power.

Sadly, a number of the energy retailers look to be using the introduction of the feed-in tariff to take advantage of solar customers.  In fact, two major retailers in particular look like they may force customers to hand over their Renewable Energy Certificates to the retailers, therefore removing the environmental benefit of investing in solar!

We’re speaking to the retailers responsible, and will continue working to make sure the contracts they’re offering people with solar panels on their roofs are fair and reasonable.  We’ve also refrained from naming and shaming those responsible, but unless the situation changes soon, we will be forced to advertise those retailers we think are offering fair deals, and those that clearly aren’t.

In the meantime, our advice to anyone considering taking up the new feed-in tariff is to read the contracts offered carefully, regardless of what your retailer might be telling you over the phone or in a cover letter, or how ‘green’ your retailer might claim to be.


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