Dear Mr Hartsuyker,
On 12 December 2015, 196 nations of the world agreed to a historic new climate deal. We congratulate the Australian Government for being a part of it. The world has now accepted the need to collectively address the global challenge of climate change.
The Australian delegation’s rhetoric in Paris was very strong – but there is a stark gap between the rhetoric and the reality of Australia’s policies. It is now time to wake-up and get serious about cutting greenhouse gas emissions to ensure our children have a liveable climate long into the future.
The Paris Agreement includes a pledge to limit warming to ‘well below’ 2 degrees and aiming for 1.5 degrees. The science is increasingly telling us that 2 degrees is not a safe target, so we welcome the stronger target and are pleased that Australia backed the goal of 1.5 degrees.
Now it’s time to get clear about what keeping to 1.5 degrees warming really means.
1.5 degrees means leaving coal, oil and gas in the ground. No new coal mines and a phase out of existing projects, with transition plans for affected communities.
1.5 degrees means we need a serious plan to get to 100% renewable energy as soon as possible. Modelling to get Australia to 100% renewables within a decade has been done. It is possible and affordable. We need to start shutting down our dirtiest coal plants now and build the clean energy we need to power our future.
1.5 degrees also means a plan to electrify our transport systems and build public transport solutions.
1.5 degrees means a plan to cut agricultural emissions.
We need to aim for zero net emissions as soon as possible, and we believe there are many opportunities and advantages in doing so: cleaner air, healthier communities, sustainable jobs and regional development.
There is no compromising when it comes to physics. The world’s climate system will not be fooled by smooth rhetoric or by carbon accounting tricks. At just one degree of warming, we are already experiencing the impacts of rising seas, extreme storms, droughts, floods and bushfire weather.
We are asking you, our local Member of Parliament, to stand up for the future of farming in Australia, for the future of our water resources, for the future of our coastlines, of marine life and other ecosystems on which we all depend, the future of our children here and all over the globe.
On the weekend of 28-29 November, hundreds of people rallied across your electorate, with a variety of actions in Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Scotts Head, Kempsey and Port Macquarie – a diverse cross-section of ordinary people who recognise the urgency of climate change and will continue to mobilise until the Government catches up.
We cannot afford to be asleep on climate change any longer. The time for real action is now.
Coffs Coast Climate Action Group
For coverage of this action on NBN news see here