Awareness

Local climate group calls on council to oppose Coal Seam Gas extraction

Media Release: 19th August 2014

Bathurst Community Climate Action Network supports the call for a no coal seam gas policy for Bathurst Regional Council.

Councillors should represent the community’s concerns over the extraction of coal seam gas, said Tracey Carpenter, President of BCCAN. Farmers, environmentalists are united in their opposition to further expansion of the toxic and damaging processes used in CSG extraction throughout Australia. We do not support any expansion of the climatically endangering and polluting fossil fuel industry here or anywhere else.

4Corners report "Battle for the Reef"

Last night's 4Corners report  "Battle for the Reef" is likely to be of interest to BCCAN members.

In January, the body tasked with protecting the Great Barrier Reef approved a plan to dump three million cubic metres of dredge spoil inside the marine park to expand the Abbot Point coal port.

The decision by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority has shocked and angered the scientific community. Internal documents obtained by Four Corners reveal deep divisions between the scientists and bureaucrats behind the decision. They show that the dumping was approved despite previous recommendations from senior scientists that it be rejected.

"That decision has to be a political decision. It is not supported by science at all, and I was absolutely flabbergasted when I heard." - Dr Charlie Veron, marine scientist

Ethinvest - Shareholder Advocacy 2013-2014

Ethinvest's "Shareholder Advocacy 2013-2014" report.

"In 2013 and 2014 Ethinvest continued to build momentum on a range of initiatives to improve the environmental and social performance of Australian listed companies."

Includes:

BHP Billiton, Climate Change & Ian Dunlop

"In my view, the greatest challenge the world, and BHP Billiton, now faces is global warming caused by greenhouse gas emissions from human fossil-fuel consumption. The extent and speed of warming has been badly underestimated.

Current policies are leading to an average surface temperature increase in excess of 4 degrees celsius, compared with the ‘official’ target of less than 2 degrees celcius. This (implies) a world of 1 billion people, not 7 billion, in which business as we know it is not possible. It is nothing less than suicidal to continue investment in fossil-fuel expansion.

The current board must take action by changing investment priorities far more extensively than the company has recently announced. I consider that my particular mix of experience and global perspective would complement existing board member skills in achieving what must become top priorities for BHP Billiton and its shareholders."

[Ian Dunlop]

Abbott Government fighting the future by axing the carbon price

Repealing the carbon price is an act of policy vandalism, according to central west climate action group, Bathurst Community Climate Action Network (BCCAN). The group says the Abbott government is being fiscally irresponsible, economically stupid and showing dreadful ignorance about what is needed for effective climate policy.

BCCAN President Tracey Carpenter says the repeal of the so-called carbon tax represents a dismal policy failure and the government should be condemned for its complete lack of wisdom and vision on this issue.

Coal Mine's Rejection on Global-Warming Grounds Has Major Implications (ICN)

Inside Climate News reports that an American federal judge "has blocked a coal project in the wilds of Colorado because federal agencies failed to consider the future global-warming damages from burning fossil fuels."

U.S. District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson's decision halts exploration proposed by Arch Coal that would have bulldozed six miles of roads on 1,700 untrammeled acres of public land.

When the agencies touted the supposed economic benefits of expanded coal mining in the Sunset Roadless Area, Jackson ruled, they should also have considered any global-warming costs.

The argument is a reasonable, and sensible one, insofar as not defining the environmental costs, to any degree, implies there is zero cost, which in light of current global circumstances is clearly not the case:

In the Colorado case, the judge wrote, "by deciding not to quantify the costs at all, the agencies effectively zeroed out the cost."

That violated a key precept of the National Environmental Policy Act, the judge said, which requires a "hard look" at all the environmental costs of government decisions.

Taking care of investments and environment

"We are also seeing an increased focus on the risks of stranded fossil fuel assets, evidenced by growing divestiture trends

Thea Ormerod, president of the Australian Religious Response to Climate Change, recently gave a presentation at Rahamim on the benefits of channeling our investments away from fossil fuel industries.

As Thea explained, "voting with our feet" when we change our banking provider sends a significant message to the banks. She believes that, while recycling is beneficial to the environment, ethical investments (changing banks, super funds) are more effective in accelerating change toward a clean-energy future.

"Investing in an ethically managed fund or super fund is one of the biggest, yet easiest, things someone can do to make a real difference on a range of environmental and social issues."   [Source: http://www.arrcc.org.au/invest-ethically]

Now comes yesterday's announcement in the Australian Financial Review (and on the Bendigo Bank website) that

"Bendigo and Adelaide Bank has become the first major bank to publicly oppose investing in coal and gas projects, joining a number of big super funds making similar moves."

Important news

BY: Tracey Carpenter

Dear BCCAN Members,

Welcome to our new members. There's so much going on - so much to share with you about our group, climate change and the environment in our region.  Here are just a few of the latest items. Please check out our wonderful new website for more of the latest activities and ways to take action on climate change  www.bccan.org.au

BCCAN made a submission opposing the new application by Coalpac for an Open Cut Mine on public land in the Garden of Stone near Lithgow. See attached and please make a submission.

David McKnight's talk on Big Coal at BCCAN AGM October 2013

This speech by David McKnight, co-author of Big Coal, was given at the BCCAN AGM on October 21, 2013.

When I was invited to speak here some time ago, I did not expect to stop off at a friends house which was nearly burned down in a bushfire. But that’s what I ended up doing. In the same street in Mount Victoria, a former colleague from University of Technology Sydney had her house burnt to the ground.

A peerless evening

Christopher Monckton’s denial that climate change is human induced is like a snake oil salesman telling you what is easier to hear. Only that this salesman is paid for by those who have a vested interest in people not facing reality says Tracey Carpenter President of Bathurst Community Climate Action Network.

She says the antics of the British classics scholar and hereditary peer would be amusing if his views were not so dangerous.

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