In response to news of the Andrews government’s re-election for a third term, Environment Victoria CEO Jono La Nauze said:
“Victorians have just endorsed the most ambitious climate agenda ever put to an Australian electorate by a major party.
“The Andrews government pledged to close all remaining coal power stations by 2035, build massive amounts of offshore wind and large-scale batteries, and cut Victoria’s emissions by up to 80 percent by 2035 – and voters gave this plan a resounding yes.
“The centrepiece of Labor’s election campaign was a promise to invest in publicly owned renewable energy through a revived State Electricity Commission, and last night’s result shows voters will reward governments willing to take the fight to big polluting energy companies.
“In the SEC, Victoria has the chance to show Australia what a good energy company looks like – one that acts in the public interest and delivers clean affordable energy for all.
“Renewable energy will transform Victoria’s economy and it is important this transition benefits everyone, including the First Nations on whose country every wind turbine, solar panel and transmission line will be built.
“In taking the driver’s seat in Victoria’s renewable revolution, the Andrews government has the opportunity to always seek First Nations consent and ensure they receive a share of the wealth generated from renewable energy projects on their land.
“And given the SEC helped dig the mines in the Latrobe Valley, we’d like to see the same commitment to cleaning them up as there is for government-owned energy. If done right, the enormous task of rehabilitating the scars left by a century of coal mining can bring jobs and an improved environment to the Latrobe Valley community.
“With such a strong result for Greens and ‘teal’ independent candidates who campaigned to end native forest logging immediately, the Andrews government needs to bring forward its closure date for this destructive and unsustainable industry.
“While the Coalition offered a strong emissions target and excellent support for households to go renewable, this was overshadowed by a ridiculous promise to boost gas that appears to have contributed to their crushing defeat in heartland seats of inner eastern Melbourne.
“The message for the Coalition must be that Victorians don’t want a bet each way on fossil fuels, they want a decisive plan to power our state with 100% clean energy.
“This result shows what’s possible after decades of community-led work to shift climate policy – and it repositions Victori as a global climate leader.”
For a list of what the major parties promised on climate and clean energy, see Environment Victoria’s election policy tracker >>
James Norman, Media and Content Manager