Place 1pm rally then march to Customs House
Speakers: Lee Rhiannon (NSW Greens MLC), Geoff Evans (University of Newcastle),
Steve Phillips (Rising Tide), Zoe Rogers (Climate Action Newcastle) and Heather Stevens (Playdates for
the Planet), Warrick Jordan, Activist.
Bring: your friends, family, colleagues & banners,
signs, instruments and your voices! (and if you like, wear blue shoe laces
in collaboration with the national walks)
invite them on facebook here
Let's tell our government to
Climate Action Newcastle presents
a free talk by John Kaye, Greens NSW MP
CPRS and the Transition to a
"The CPRS in its current
form does little to drive the transition to a low carbon
economy. Instead, the scheme pays polluters and fails to make
the emissions cuts necessary to protect against climate
change. John will talk about creating the new green,
jobs-rich economy and actions that can be taken to achieve
Wednesday 27th May,
6.30pm for 7 pm start
Wickham Sports Club
Albert St Wickham
There will plenty of discussion
time after the talk and wood-fired pizzas
Over 500 people from over 140 groups and organisations attended the Summit. It was the first of its kind to bring together the grassroots climate movement from across Australia, to discuss and strategise a shared direction for 2009 and beyond.
The group was large and diverse, yet the willingness to work together was palpable. While some people attended skills workshops and discussion groups, others formed teams to develop the network structure and a national campaign – often late into the evenings.
Among the outcomes of the Summit, participants unanimously agreed on a shared movement-wide campaign to:
Prevent the CPRS from becoming law, as it will fail to make emission cuts necessary to stop the climate emergency.
Build community-wide action to demand green jobs, a just transition for fossil fuel industry workers and 100% renewable energy by 2020.
Aim for stabilisation at 300ppm CO2 and strong international agreement in line with what science and global justice demands.
A timeline of national events, with the first in late March, has also been agreed.
A process for finalising the structure of the new network has been proposed, following 3 days of work by the network-building stream of the Summit. This will be finalised over the next several weeks.
Other outcomes of the Summit are available on the Climate Summit website. A draft, voluntary policy sign on statement was agreed. On the Monday night, inter-movement climate talks were held between the major ENGOs and representatives of the grassroots movement, to facilitate dialogue between the different arms of the movement. On the Tuesday, 35 politicians including Climate Change Minister Penny Wong, Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner and Shadow Climate Change Minister Greg Hunt were visited by members of community climate groups in a lobbying blitz on Parliament House.
In a moving culmination of the Summit, on the first day of Federal Parliament in 2009, 2500 people formed a human chain around Parliament House to send a “climate emergency” message to the Rudd government. It was a peaceful and powerful display of our intent to put climate change at the top of the political agenda in 2009.
The event was well covered by the media, including stories on ABC Lateline, Radio National, The Age and the Canberra Times. Several community climate group members had their first opportunity to be media spokespeople, and did us all proud.
The 4-day Summit was truly a historic event – and it’s just a taste of what’s to come!
If you attended, please fill in the evaluation form on the website, to ensure that we apply the lessons learned here in our ongoing collaboration as a network.
If you didn’t attend, but would like to join the new network, please register your details here.
Please see find more information on the Summit outcomes below, and keep an eye on the website. We look forward to working with you all in the future.
One of the objectives of the inaugural summit was to develop at least one campaign that community climate action groups could work on together in 2009. Through the campaign strategy and development stream we fulfilled this objective. The process included an open stream over three days, which more than 100 people participated in, with a report back and consensus building decision-making session at the end of each day with the whole summit. The agreed campaign objectives are written at the top of this email.
We face a climate emergency. Our vision is to work together at emergency speed to restore in a just way a safe climate in time for all people, all species and all generations.
In order to meet the objectives written above in this email, and work towards our vision, the summit also agreed on some key shared tactics and initiatives. We agreed to utilise diverse tactics to engage different types of people to achieve our objectives
Some key initiatives and actions include:
A Campaign manual for climate action groups. Manual to include information/fact sheets on the three objectives, including safe and just climate information, tips, tools and tactics for community engagement, building this campaign in your community and talking to people and getting them involved.
March 27 and the day after Rudd tables the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) Legislation in the Lower House of Parliament – Actions at Corporate Offices and MPs offices calling for their opposition to the CPRS.
June 6 – World Environment Day – Rallies in each major city and actions in regional areas launching the 100% Renewables in by 2020 campaign
Mid September to coincide with the peak melt of the Arctic Summer Sea Ice (and school holidays) – 3-day Climate Direct Action Camps at polluting infrastructure in each state
In the week leading up to and during the Copenhagen International Climate Negotiations – actions in communities across the country
Our first shared activity together – the step-ins at local politicians offices in late March is coming up soon, so start organising your group to take part and lets show them what a powerful movement we are.
There were many other tactics and initiatives brainstormed at the summit. If you'd like a comprehensive list, and to get more involved with the post-Summit campaign workings, send us an email. Some key ideas that have momentum behind them include ways to engage local governments in this campaign and a union and workers engagement including organising conferences with unions and the climate movement.
These objectives won’t be reached without you. We invite you to get involved. Some ways you can do that:
Join your local Climate Action Group or start your own
Help organise one or many of the actions outlined above, through joining one of the regional organising working groups that are in the process of being established as part of the national network– email; firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest.
Help build and develop this campaign including the petition and campaign manual by joining the campaign working group we are in the process of establishing as part of the national network – email; email@example.com to express your interest and find out more.
Keep checking www.climatesummit.org.au in the next week for more information about the climate summit campaign outcomes including contact details for people working on different tactics and initiatives.
Up to 80 people participated in the Network Development Stream and had productive discussion about the role and structure of a national grassroots climate action network. The Stream developed a Purpose Statement for the Network that was approved by the consensus decision of the whole Summit:
To build a diverse, participatory grassroots climate action movement; support the exchange of knowledge, skills and resources; implement the outcomes of national Climate Action Summits; and to facilitate major campaigns.
The Summit empowered a Working Group to continue drafting a proposed structure for the network. Please email Wenny Theresia at firstname.lastname@example.org
if you would like to join the Network Working Group.
The Group will be developing a preliminary proposal on Network Structure by the end of February. It will then seek the feedback of Climate Action Groups for a final proposal towards the end of March. The Group will consider issues like membership and decision-making, and will be developing a draft Structure based on these agreed objectives for the network: decentralisation of power, democratic representation, transparency and accountability, simplicity, effectiveness, regional participation, responsiveness and the balance of local autonomy and collective unity.
Policy sign on statement
Over two days of the summit the Policy Paper on Climate Change (drafted by CAG’s preceding the summit) was presented and debated.
The voting system used to decide on the acceptance or rejection of recommendations involved;
“Green” - we support with this recommendation as is, no changes required
“Orange” - we could support this recommendation, subject to a few minor changes being made
“Red” - we could not support this recommendation without major changes
Of the 81 recommendations put to participants during the two sessions at the Summit, 72 recommendations received “Green” majority support. Nine recommendations including recommendations around nuclear power, carbon capture and storage, and biofuels, were rejected during these sessions.
Full details of the voting results and ongoing areas for decisions can be found here on the website. (You will need an account with the website to view those documents. If you do not have one, use this: Username - "ClimateActionGroup" Password - "time4action")
While the “Green” policy recommendations do not represent the views of the Climate Movement or all individual groups, they helped to crystalise where climate action groups stand on key policy positions. This will greatly facilitate the completion of a policy sign-on statement for groups in coming weeks.
The overall response to the policy process was amazing and we now have a national policy team comprising of over 15 keen and informed individuals from almost every state and territory in Australia. We are in the process of working on the new timeline for Draft 3 and will be in touch with further details on when this will be ready.
If you would like to remain engaged on the Policy paper and vote on future iterations as we work towards a final sign-on statement, please email a member of the policy drafting team and we can add you to the list:
On Monday evening at the end of the summit a special meeting took place between grassroots and state and national NGOs to talk about how the broader movement – not just local community groups can work together more effectively.
Attendees from the summit who participated in this meeting included Lizette from Climate Action Albury-Wodonga, Jenny from Climate Change Balmain-Rozelle, Duncan and Zoe from Climate Action Newcastle, Matt and Mark from Beyond Zero Emissions and George from Rising Tide and the summit organising collective. Other NGOs that attended the meeting were Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, Oxfam, the Nature Conservation Council of NSW, Environment Victoria, the Australian Conservation Foundation, Climate Action Network Australia, Australian Youth Climate Coalition, Get Up and the Australian Greens.
We reported back on the outcomes of the summit and the next steps, and spent some time discussing with the other groups how the broader movement can be more complementary and integrated.
The key outcome of the meeting was that a further process is needed to carry on the all-important dialogue between grassroots and state and national climate groups and this is going to be facilitated by CANA. CANA have undertaken to review the agenda for the upcoming CANA conference in light of this development and the outcomes of the summit. Stay tuned for more.
On Tuesday 3rd and Wednesday 4th February forty delegates from the summit spent the day lobbying members of Federal parliament, taking the message of the summit with us. It was a great experience and really drove home to the politicians we met the strength and aspiration of the national climate movement. We met Government, Opposition and Independent members, Senators and even a few Minister, around 35 in all, from every state and territory. Because the first sitting day is so busy, and as a result of the huge economic stimulus package, some MPs had to cancel or postpone, but plans are already underway for follow up work. Many MPs offered to take more information. Some highlights include:
Connecting with Nationals MPs wanting to make moves to stop coal mining from destroying prime agricultural land
Hearing from Government MPs about their support for some of our work
Undertaking to have further contact, sending information in, holding further meetings and following up in the community.
Taking the summit’s outcomes straight to Climate Change Minister Penny Wong, her chief of staff and advisor for a half hour meeting.
Being able to put the skills learnt at the lobbying workshops into action.
The teams who undertook the lobbying put hours and hours into it, researching MP’s backgrounds, brainstorming how to approach the meetings and debriefing afterwards. The generosity of the staff in Greens Senators’ offices – particularly Tim Hollo from Christine Milne’s office – needs to be acknowledged and commended. If the national climate summit becomes a biannual event, we look forward to undertaking more of this group lobbying in the future, with even more delegates taking part, and more MPs.
Human chain around Parliament House
On the first day of Federal Parliament in 2009, 2500 people formed a human chain around Parliament House to send a “climate emergency” message to the Rudd government. It was a peaceful and powerful display of our intent to put climate change at the top of the political agenda in 2009.
The day was a success despite being told that we would not be given permission to hold hands around the building, the police and security stood aside and allowed people to peacefully ring Parliament house with a chain of people and banners that stretched the entire 1.7 kilometres around.
The summit received a lot of favourable media coverage both as the event loomed and during the summit. Media interest in the summit peaked when we announced our position on the CPRS and two other core objectives, then managed to encircle parliament with a human chain. Commercial and community based media outlets were very keen to hear from CAG representatives and people new to the climate movement. The result of having a diversity of voices from the summit talking about our event and our movement provided some fresh new voices to the climate debate and often a much braver and more realistic assessment of what sort of action we need to avoid catastrophic climate change that has been heard in a while.
A special mention needs to be made of both Naomi Hodgson and Jenny Curtis who put their hands up to be media spokespeople during the summit and at the day of action on Tuesday Feb 3. Both Naomi and Jenny articulated the core outcomes from the summit and showed the summit to be part of a strong and growing people’s movement on climate change that will turn the tide on climate action in Australia.
Community rally to declare a state of climate emergency
This was held on Sunday, 28 September, at Civic Park. It was a great afternoon, with speakers at Civic Park then a march to Labor MP Sharon Grierson's office to declare a state of climate emergency, finishing in Wheeler Plaza, wielding banners along the way.
Speakers included Zoe Rogers from Climate Action Newcastle, George Woods from Rising Tide and Zane Alcorn from Socialist Alliance.
We had lots of hooting of horns from passing motorists and the huge Climate Action Newcastle Climate Emergency banner attracted lots of attention.
It IS a climate emergency and we need to act now
Melting of the Arctic sea ice may be complete by the northern summer of 2010. Only by responding to climate change as an emergency do we have any hope of reducing the impact for future generations. We must urgently and drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. 100% electricity from renewables in 10 years With abundant solar, wind and geothermal resources, there's no reason why we couldn't be powered entirely by renewables. We must go beyond the government's inadequate 20% by 2020 target and ensure that emissions begin to decline from 2010.
Coal: leave it in the ground Burning coal for electricity accounts for over a third of Australia's greenhouse gas emissions each year. On top of this is Australia's coal exports, which when burnt cause more pollution than the total of Australia's domestic economy. No new mines! Stop the third coal loader!
No carbon trading loopholes Instead of these measures, the government is taking a business-as-usual approach. Carbon trading will not only be too slow to promote the investment we need, but it gives the big polluters free carbon pollution permits. By the government's own admission, under its scheme emissions will continue to rise for years.
The Camp for Climate Action was a huge success, thanks to the hard work by Rising Tide and many others. You can read more about the camp here. The footage of the giant ticking clock is now available here. The human clock counts down to the end of coal at Climate Camp Australia 2008 in Newcastle. This clip contains footage from a helicopter flying over beautiful Newcastle beaches, the busy harbour and coal terminals, mountains of black coal and finally an inspiring community protest at Climate Camp in a football oval, just over from the Carrington coal loaders.
Climate Change can no longer be denied and a strong policy to curb greenhouse gas emissions is long overdue. The six coal-fired power stations in the Hunter generate 80% of the energy in NSW, and are the major source of greenhouse pollution. They must be phased out and replaced with renewable energy technologies that are effective and readily available. Our five speakers will examine the potential of the Hunter Valley/Wyong region to accommodate renewable energy-based industries that will stimulate employment and strengthen the region’s economy.
Chaired by Greg Piper MP, Mayor of Lake Macquarie
Geoff Evans is with the School of Environmental and Life Sciences in the Faculty of Science and Information Technology at the University of Newcastle
Bill Mitchell is the Professor of Economics, and the Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE) at the University of Newcastle.
Geoff and Bill were contributors to the recently published report, commissioned by Greenpeace, “A Just Transition to a Renewable Energy Economy in the Hunter Region”.
Peter Droege chairs the World Council for Renewable Energy (Asia Pacific) and is a steering committee member of the Urban Climate Change Research Network. Mark Fogarty is a former director of the NSW Sustainable Energy Authority (SEDA) and is currently a director of CBD Energy, a company that looks to implementing solar/thermal power in the Hunter. Tim Ayres is the Assistant State Secretary of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union. The AMWU has recently conducted a poll of its members that shows overwhelming support for the union’s position that government investment in renewable manufacturing will create jobs and tackle climate change.
The forum will be held at St Alban’s Church Hall, St Alban’s Close, Charlestown, (parking on site) On Thursday 28th August, beginning 7.30 pm
If travelling from the south – Turn left from the Pacific Highway at the Lincoln Street lights, then right at the roundabout, bear left at the next roundabout into Canberra Street, and through the next two lights then forward into St Alban’s Close If travelling from the north – Turn right from the Pacific Highway at the Lincoln Street lights, turn right at the roundabout, bear left at the next roundabout into Canberra Street, through the next two lights then forward into St Alban’s Close. If travelling from the north along Charlestown Road – Turn right at the Griffiths Street lights, then left at the next street, Chapman Street, then left at the lights into St Albans Close.
Contacts: Bob Phillips 4945 0002 Ben Henley 4921 7844