Media Releases | 24th Jun, 2010

Climate change failure claims another leader

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Environment Victoria has welcomed Julia Gillard’s appointment as Prime Minister and called on her to act decisively to make deep cuts in Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

“Kevin Rudd is the latest political leader to lose leadership on climate change, following Howard and Turnbull” pointed out Environment Victoria’s CEO Kelly O’Shanassy.

She says Australian voters want concrete action to reduce emissions, and will be watching closely to see what stance Prime Minister Gillard takes.

“It’s clear that Julia Gillard will need to deliver real action on climate change to keep the top job. Replacing Hazelwood power station, the dirtiest power station in Australia, should be high on her list of priorities along with introducing price on carbon.”

“It’s critical that the ALP demonstrates that it has learned its lesson on this issue, and that it is willing to take action with or without the support of opposition parties.

“In Federal Parliament earlier this week Labor Member for Wills Kelvin Thomson said there was a case for Federal involvement and called on the Federal and State Governments to work together and seriously consider options for replacing Hazelwood.”

A report released by Environment Victoria earlier this month showed that clean energy replacements for Hazelwood can create up to 2500 construction jobs and 2300 ongoing jobs, many more than Hazelwood currently provides”

“Clean energy projects that are ready to go with planning approvals, or close to having planning approvals, can replace both Hazelwood’s peak electricity generation and also its annual contribution by the end of 2012, ensuring that we reduce emissions and keep the lights on.”

“By combining new renewable energy with efficient gas and energy efficiency measures we can cut Hazelwood’s annual emissions of 16.2 million tonnes to 1.8 million tonnes, which would reduce Victoria’s emissions by 12 percent annually, as well as freeing up 27 billion litres of water for other uses” concluded Ms O’Shanassy.

For interview:

Kelly O’Shanassy CEO, Environment Victoria on 0421 054 402
Mark Wakeham, Environment Victoria Campaigns Director, in Parliament House Canberra on 0439 700 501
Louise Matthiesson, Media Officer on 9341 8113 or 0417 017 844