All Media Releases
18 Aug 2008
The Rudd Government must ignore the short-sighted agenda of Australia’s big polluters and stick to its commitment to lift the Mandatory Renewable Energy Target, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Senator Milne said, “It is no surprise that Australia’s biggest polluters are lobbying the Government to protect the status quo under which they can keep raking in the profits and pay nothing for the carbon pollution they pump into the atmosphere.
15 Aug 2008
Greening Australia’s car fleet to reduce emissions, and rebuilding our manufacturing sector, should be the focus of the Rudd Government’s private vehicles policy, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
The Greens welcome the Bracks Review’s recommendations to bring forward and double the Green Car Fund and to include road transport in the emissions trading scheme. However, these policies must be complemented by mandatory vehicle fuel efficiency standards, to which any car industry subsidies, including the Global Automotive Transition Scheme, must be tied.
Senator Milne said, “One of the Rudd Government’s pillars of climate policy is to assist the global effort to reduce emissions. How would that be helped by selling more polluting V8s to the Gulf States, ASEAN and South Africa?
15 Aug 2008
Australian Greens Senator Christine Milne said:
"It is extremely telling that the coal giants have so little faith in their own geosequestration proposals that they are unwilling to either put forward serious funds or to bear the long-term liability in case the storage fails.
12 Aug 2008
The announcement by several major global coal corporations of significant plans to invest in solar thermal power stations should lead the Rudd Government to shift its focus from coal to renewable energy, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Engineering company WorleyParsons today announced that it was investigating building an array of large-scale solar thermal power plants across Australia, starting with a 250 MW plant to be operational within 3 years. The project depends on the cooperation of major coal corporations including BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Wesfarmers and others.
11 Aug 2008
Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, will re-introduce amendments to the Energy Efficiency Opportunities Act to require large energy users to implement the findings of energy efficiency audits in the next Senate sitting period.
A report for COAG by Allen Consulting Group, suppressed since June until revealed today in the Carbon and Environment Daily newsletter, backs the Greens position that mandating energy efficiency for large users would have a substantial impact in reducing emissions with economic benefits that companies currently do not consider given the broad range of decisions they face each day.
Senator Milne said, "Energy efficiency provides a tremendous opportunity to reduce emissions fast and save money into the bargain, and yet too often it is overlooked.
07 Aug 2008
The Australian Greens today backed calls to maintain the mandatory renewable energy target and reject the reported advice of the Wilkins Review and the Productivity Commission to scrap the scheme.
"It is quite clear that an emission trading scheme will not, on its own, be sufficient to stimulate adequate investment in renewable energy," Senator Christine Milne, Australian Greens spokesperson for Climate Change said today.
"As recognised by Professor Garnaut, achieving any reasonable greenhouse emission target will require supplementary policies, including the renewable energy target and feed-in laws to kick-start the renewable energy sector."
"However, the Government's inadequate target of reducing emissions by 60% by 2050 remains the central problem in this whole debate. If Australia adopts emission targets that would actually give us a chance of avoiding catastrophic climate change, such as the Greens' target of 40% cuts by 2020, heading towards zero net emissions by 2050 at the latest, then the need for urgent investment in renewable energy becomes a no-brainer," Senator Milne said.
16 Jul 2008
The Rudd Government's Green Paper has failed the test of true leadership by neutralising the carbon price signal and still providing no responsible target, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Senator Milne said, "Minister Wong's Green Paper protects polluters and provides no signal for investment for a zero-emissions future. Minister Wong used the term 'transformation' many times in her speech, but the scheme proposed here provides no drivers at all for transformation, instead protecting existing investments at all costs.
15 Jul 2008
Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, today called on the Rudd Government to release Treasury advice that reportedly warns against a $5 billion investment in geosequestration of greenhouse emissions from coal, apparently to be announced in tomorrow's Green Paper.
A source in today's Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun calls geosequestration a "theoretical approach" and says "Not only is it very costly, no one knows whether it is a realistic storage solution for carbon emissions." However, the Rudd Government reportedly plans to push ahead with this expensive and risky option against the Treasury advice.
Senator Milne said, "Is the Rudd Government really so blinded by coal dust that it is willing to brush aside Treasury's warnings against geosequestration, and continue to ignore the real opportunities to slash emissions that are ready to roll out now?
11 Jul 2008
The Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition have declared themselves incapable of the kind of creative, courageous leadership needed to deal with our two biggest challenges, climate change and peak oil, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Senator Milne said, "Australians trying to get to work and school, confronted by soaring petrol and grocery prices, and horrified by the images of a dying Murray, must be tearing their hair out in frustration at the absolute failure of leadership and imagination from both the old parties.
08 Jul 2008
Australian Greens Senator and Vice President of the IUCN World Conservation Union, Christine Milne, is delighted by the World Heritage listing today of the New Caledonian coral reefs, lagoon and associated ecosystems, after a long campaign by local organisations and international NGOs.
Senator Milne said, “This wonderful result is testament to the power of a group of passionate people dedicating themselves to a vital cause.
“Coming on the heels of last week’s 25th anniversary of saving the Franklin, I am personally delighted to have been able to help the Kanak people achieve this win for the environment and for indigenous rights over the short term interests of the Goro nickel mine.”
The international campaign was launched after four New Caledonian delegates described the impact of nickel mining on their community and environment at an Asia Pacific Greens meeting in Brisbane in April 2000.
Senator Milne helped the delegates work through the IUCN and other channels to finally achieve World Heritage listing today at the World Heritage meeting in Quebec. She has visited the reefs to work with local campaigners over the last decade.
“My congratulations to all the local and international campaigners who have helped protect New Caledonia’s lagoon and coral reefs for future generations.”
Greens back $10 billion investment call for mass transit; Alternatives are the only real compensation
08 Jul 2008
The Australian Greens today strongly backed calls from the Bus Industry and public transport experts for a $10 billion injection of funds from the Federal Government into mass transit infrastructure as the only way to provide Australians with real, permanent relief from rising oil and carbon prices.
Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said, "The Greens have long been calling for a complete rethink of transport policy in Australia, reprioritising funding from roads across to mass transit infrastructure, bike paths and walkways.
04 Jul 2008
Professor Garnaut's portrayal of the urgency of climate change does not match his support for a slow start to emissions trading and incremental economic change, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Senator Milne said, "Professor Garnaut has come a long way in a short period of time with the complex science of climate change. But there is still a serious mismatch between his apparent understanding of the urgency of the issue and the cautious and incrementalist policy prescriptions that lie underneath his rhetoric of great change.
03 Jul 2008
The Victorian Labor Government's unqualified approval for the construction of a dirty brown coal fired power station in the Latrobe Valley is an act of total denial on climate change, and contempt for community wishes that governments take action to curb emissions, not increase them, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne said today.
"This is one situation where the Prime Minister could step in and demonstrate his 'cooperative federalism' by insisting his Victorian colleagues move towards renewables and energy efficiency, rather than propose to sink $100 million taxpayer dollars into propping up another polluting power plant.
02 Jul 2008
The Rudd Government's unambitious renewable energy target is still too important to be delayed for another 12 months, Australian Greens climate change spokesperson, Senator Christine Milne, said today.
Senator Milne said, "It beggars belief that, with scientific warnings getting more urgent each day, Minister Wong thinks it would be OK to delay the increased renewable energy target for another 12 months.
27 Jun 2008
Australian Greens Senator Christine Milne today called on Bob Carr to explain how nuclear power can be a 'bridging technology' when the final destination of renewable energy is closer than nuclear.
Senator Milne said, "It is a great pity that Bob Carr is using his position with Macquarie Bank to effectively delay action to build Australia's post-carbon economy. A 'bridging technology' can only be useful if it can be brought on much faster than the final intended technology. That is patently not the case with nuclear and renewables.