Adam Bandt says Wentworth is a lesson—plan for coal exit or get punished

Greens Co-Deputy Leader and spokesperson for climate change and energy Adam Bandt MP today said that the Wentworth by-election result makes it clear that if you’re a government without a plan to tackle climate change, you need to plan for your inevitable demise. On Monday, Bandt re-iterated that an election is required as soon as possible so action can finally be taken on climate change and to end the torture on Nauru.

“The Wentworth result is the canary in the coal mindset. If you don’t have a plan to get off coal and onto renewables, voters will punish you,” said Mr Bandt.

“Even Australia’s richest electorate knows that you can’t make money if the planet is cooked.

“Voters have heard the scientists’ message that we need to shut two thirds of coal-fired power stations by 2030.

“I won’t be offering support to the Morrison Government. It’s time to go to an election.

“It’s clear that people have had enough of this rotten government’s agenda.

“We’re also one step closer to getting kids and their families off Nauru.

“If Labor got behind the crossbench bill in Parliament today, we could bring kids and their families here to receive the medical attention they need before Christmas.

Greens call to Reduce conflict between water used in coal/gas mining, and the environment and agriculture: Senate Committee

The final report of a Senate Inquiry into water use by mining operations has recommended expanding Commonwealth control over water use, and dramatically improving understanding of water use by mining industries to help reduce the conflict between water use by mining operations, and agriculture and the environment.

“Australia is at a crossroads – large parts of our country are facing extreme drought, yet the fossil fuel mining industry is taking billions of litres of water which would otherwise be available for our regional communities and the environment,” said Chair of the Committee, Australian Greens Senator Janet Rice.

A key recommendation of the Inquiry is to expand the application of the ‘water trigger’. Currently only coal and coal-seam gas projects projects need to be assessed by the Commonwealth. The Senate Committee recommends that the use of the water trigger be expanded to include all unconventional gas projects.

Other recommendations include prioritising a better knowledge of the cumulative impacts of projects, more funding for the Department of Energy and Environment to monitor and ensure compliance by the fossil fuel industry, and publishing real time data so the community knows just how much water is actually being used by mining.

“This report demonstrates that massive and poorly regulated mining projects using billions of litres of water each year are in direct conflict with a healthy environment and agricultural production.”

“I’m pleased that Labor supported many of the recommendations in the report. But the recommendations don’t go far enough. We need a phase-out of coal and unconventional gas to better protect our water resources.”

“And we absolutely must stop projects like the Adani coal mine, which has recently been granted an unlimited water licence to extract 12.5 billion litres of water per year from the drought-stricken Suttor River, on top of its licence to use unlimited amounts of groundwater. This is just obscene and untenable.”

“Both major parties have taken millions from the fossil fuel industry. In return the major parties are continuing to prop up polluting and dying industries like coal. This must stop.”

“For the health of our agriculture industry and environment, the major parties need to get their hands out of the pockets of fossil fuel corporations.”

Museum solar roof wins Climate Council award

City of Newcastle has taken out top honours for its work on the climate change frontline, at the inaugural Cities Power Partner Summit Awards.

The City took home the Cities Power Partnership Energy Efficiency Achievement award for the Newcastle Museum Energy Upgrade Project, which upgraded lighting in several sections of the building to maximise energy efficiency, saving thousands on power bills, in addition to a installing a 100kW solar panel.

Museum-solar-panels-wide-aerial_web.jpg
The awards, held Thursday 18 October in Kiama NSW as part of the Climate Council’s Cities Power Partnership National Summit, recognised the unsung work of climate heroes in local governments across the country, who are quietly transforming Australia’s energy landscape.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the city was thrilled to be recognised as energy efficiency leaders within Australia.

“This project is one that continues to build on our long track record of acting to reduce electricity consumption and carbon emissions,” the Lord Mayor said. “We have undertaken energy-efficiency upgrades at social, cultural and recreational facilities that Newcastle residents use every day, as well as council operational buildings.

“Newcastle Museum, as a key cultural facility and tourist attraction, was a prime site for an energy efficient upgrade, which is helping the council save money on electricity bills, reducing ongoing operational costs for this heritage site. We’re also undertaking significant street lighting upgrades for energy savings powering towards council’s goal to have 30% of its electricity generated from low-carbon sources by 2020.”

Alix Pearce, director of the Cities Power Partnership, Australia’s largest local government climate alliance, said that the range of climate solutions coming out of Australia’s councils was staggering.

“The local climate solutions on display at these awards are tangible proof that Australian communities are rising up to meet the challenges of climate change,” she said.

“From supporting local schools to save thousands on their power bills through solar energy through to developing Australia’s largest floating solar farm, Cities Power Partnership councils are leading the way with practical local climate solutions.”

“These local heroes are stepping up and getting the job done, in the face of continuing Federal climate inaction. It’s time to celebrate these quiet achievers, who are working at the climate frontline and helping their communities to drive down local greenhouse gas pollution.”

The Cities Power Partnership Awards celebrated outstanding work from local governments in the fields of renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable transport and community advocacy, as well as individual climate champion awards.

FULL LIST OF AWARD WINNERS

Renewable Energy Achievement Award
Winner: Solar my School – Three Council Program from Randwick, Waverley & Woollahra Councils (New South Wales)

Energy Efficiency Achievement
Winner: Newcastle Museum Energy upgrade – City of Newcastle (New South Wales)

Sustainable Transport Achievement Award
Winner: Transition to Zero Emissions Vehicles Action Plan 2018-21 – ACT Government

Community Engagement Achievement Award
Winner: Floating solar farm – Lismore City Council (New South Wales)

Knowledge Sharing Award
Winner: South East NSW Councils buddy group (New South Wales)

CPP Ambassador Award
Winner: Clr Ken Keith, Mayor, Parkes Shire Council (New South Wales)

The Cities Power Partnership is a free national program created by the Climate Council that
celebrates and accelerates the pollution reduction and clean energy successes of Australia in
towns and cities.

Decision to withdraw terrorism charges – Operation Moorsel

The NSW Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT) has informed the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions that it supports the withdrawal of the terrorism charge laid on a 25-year-old Sri Lankan citizen (Mr Nizamdeen) on 31 August 2018.

The decision to lay the charge was informed by an investigation of one of Mr Nizamdeen’s notebooks found in a desk he used at the University of NSW.

A subsequent expert forensic examination of the notebook indicated irregularities between examples of Mr Nizamdeen’s handwriting and the handwriting in the notebook that specified terrorist threats.

The JCTT yesterday received definitive advice on the handwriting that has resulted in the action to discontinue the prosecution.

The JCTT investigation has shifted to focus on the possibility that the content of the notebook has been created by other people.

The JCTT acted in good faith on the evidence available at all stages of the investigation. The very nature of terrorism matter often means that police need to intervene earlier than they would in normal criminal matters.

As more evidence was gathered that contradicted the initial material, the JCTT acted appropriately to inform the CDPP and inform the courts.

The investigation into the circumstances of this matter remains ongoing, but there is no information to indicate that there is a current threat to community safety.

The JCTT has committed significant resources to this investigation and is determined to discover those responsible for these criminal actions.

NSW GOVERNMENT BUILDS THOUSANDS MORE SOCIAL HOUSING HOMES

Under the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government the total number of social housing homes has increased by 11,480 since Labor’s time in power, according to the Australian Productivity Commission and the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for Social Housing Pru Goward today toured a new development in Westmead, which will provide 67 new units to people currently on the social housing waiting list and others in need of affordable housing.

A number of properties on the site are being managed by St George Community Housing under the NSW Government’s $1.1 billion Social and Affordable Housing Fund, which will provide 3400 additional homes across NSW for vulnerable families.

“The Labor Government reduced the total number of social housing dwellings by more than 600 a year in its last term in office. Since then, the number of social housing homes has increased by more than 1600 a year,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“The Labor Government sold off social housing without a comprehensive strategy to re-invest the funds into new, fit-for-purpose housing. Our Future Directions social housing program will continue to increase the number of homes, build better communities and improve the quality of social housing in NSW.

“The NSW Liberals & Nationals Government is embarking on the biggest social housing construction program in Australia, building almost 27,000 social and affordable homes over ten years.”

Ms Goward said the proceeds of the Millers Point sales has already added new social housing properties in locations such as Penrith, Blacktown, Parramatta, Ryde, Canada Bay, Lane Cove, Bankstown and Sutherland, with hundreds more under construction.

“Each sale has resulted in almost five new and fit-for-purpose homes being built, which helps many of our most vulnerable families on the social housing waiting list find safe and secure housing,” Ms Goward said.

“The NSW Government is committed to ensuring the most vulnerable people in our community have a place to live and are supported to break the cycle of disadvantage.”

Greens Protest Australia’s Richest Greyhound Race Citing Animal Cruelty

Australian Greens Animal Welfare Spokesperson, Senator Mehreen Faruqi, will speak at a protest tomorrow afternoon outside the Wentworth Park, to protest the ‘Million Dollar Chase’ and the $500,000 in taxpayer funds for the event. Senator Faruqi is one of the leading voices against the cruel greyhound racing industry.

When: Saturday, 20th October at 5pm

Where: Millard Reserve 38 Wentworth Park Rd, Glebe, Opposite Wentworth Park.

More Information: https://www.facebook.com/events/1089839827846195/

Senator Faruqi said: “Two years after the Liberals banned greyhound racing, we are now witnessing a race where they are shamelessly throwing hundreds of thousands of dollars of public money at.

“This is such a slap in the face of the community who has been fighting hard to end the cruelty. It is a slap in the face of those incredible, kind and compassionate greyhound rescuers who take in and look after these beautiful animals who have been mistreated so badly.

“It is nothing other than complete arrogance from a government so completely out of touch and an opposition who do not care about animals, and they don’t care about the people they represent. The only thing they care about is their donors and their powerful pals—the gambling industry, big business and media shock jocks.

“They don’t care that trainers continually engage in cruel training practices. In just a three months period, 26 trainers were charged, including for drugging of greyhounds, arsenic, unauthorised export of greyhounds, extreme animal cruelty and live baiting. Imagine how many are happening that aren’t caught,” she concluded.

Greens say it will be A vote for change at the Wentworth by-election

The Wentworth by-election has become a referendum on climate change and refugees and is a unique opportunity to send a message to the Liberals who don’t deserve to govern.

Our Greens candidate has run a great campaign. It’s important to turn out tomorrow and to vote for our excellent Greens candidate, Dom WY Kanak, if you want action on climate change and refugees.

After that I urge voters to take note of Kerryn’s progressive views on refugees and climate change which are a welcome change from both the major parties.

With the Government at risk of losing this seat and Labor running dead, people can vote Green and choose Kerryn over yet another Liberal backbencher.

Museum solar roof wins Climate Council award

City of Newcastle has taken out top honours for its work on the climate change frontline, at the inaugural Cities Power Partner Summit Awards.

The City took home the Cities Power Partnership Energy Efficiency Achievement award for the Newcastle Museum Energy Upgrade Project, which upgraded lighting in several sections of the building to maximise energy efficiency, saving thousands on power bills, in addition to a installing a 100kW solar panel.

Museum-solar-panels-wide-aerial_web.jpg
The awards, held Thursday 18 October in Kiama NSW as part of the Climate Council’s Cities Power Partnership National Summit, recognised the unsung work of climate heroes in local governments across the country, who are quietly transforming Australia’s energy landscape.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the city was thrilled to be recognised as energy efficiency leaders within Australia.

“This project is one that continues to build on our long track record of acting to reduce electricity consumption and carbon emissions,” the Lord Mayor said. “We have undertaken energy-efficiency upgrades at social, cultural and recreational facilities that Newcastle residents use every day, as well as council operational buildings.

“Newcastle Museum, as a key cultural facility and tourist attraction, was a prime site for an energy efficient upgrade, which is helping the council save money on electricity bills, reducing ongoing operational costs for this heritage site. We’re also undertaking significant street lighting upgrades for energy savings powering towards council’s goal to have 30% of its electricity generated from low-carbon sources by 2020.”

Alix Pearce, director of the Cities Power Partnership, Australia’s largest local government climate alliance, said that the range of climate solutions coming out of Australia’s councils was staggering.

“The local climate solutions on display at these awards are tangible proof that Australian communities are rising up to meet the challenges of climate change,” she said.

“From supporting local schools to save thousands on their power bills through solar energy through to developing Australia’s largest floating solar farm, Cities Power Partnership councils are leading the way with practical local climate solutions.”

“These local heroes are stepping up and getting the job done, in the face of continuing Federal climate inaction. It’s time to celebrate these quiet achievers, who are working at the climate frontline and helping their communities to drive down local greenhouse gas pollution.”

The Cities Power Partnership Awards celebrated outstanding work from local governments in the fields of renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable transport and community advocacy, as well as individual climate champion awards.

FULL LIST OF AWARD WINNERS

Renewable Energy Achievement Award
Winner: Solar my School – Three Council Program from Randwick, Waverley & Woollahra Councils (New South Wales)

Energy Efficiency Achievement
Winner: Newcastle Museum Energy upgrade – City of Newcastle (New South Wales)

Sustainable Transport Achievement Award
Winner: Transition to Zero Emissions Vehicles Action Plan 2018-21 – ACT Government

Community Engagement Achievement Award
Winner: Floating solar farm – Lismore City Council (New South Wales)

Knowledge Sharing Award
Winner: South East NSW Councils buddy group (New South Wales)

CPP Ambassador Award
Winner: Clr Ken Keith, Mayor, Parkes Shire Council (New South Wales)

The Cities Power Partnership is a free national program created by the Climate Council that
celebrates and accelerates the pollution reduction and clean energy successes of Australia in
towns and cities.

Maiden Supercars event a huge economic win

A $30 million windfall generated by the inaugural Newcastle 500 flowed through Newcastle’s local economy last year, according to an independent research centre’s analysis of mobile phone data, banking records and business transactions.

The Hunter Research Foundation Centre (HRFC) found the maiden race strengthened the city’s capacity to host major events and generated an estimated $30.1 million in gross revenue.

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The analysis does not include the direct economic benefit or flow-on effects in neighbouring areas including Port Stephens, Lake Macquarie, Maitland and Cessnock.

Councillors will consider the HRFC report, Newcastle 500 Supercars Event Economic and Non-economic Impact Assessment, commissioned by City of Newcastle, on Tuesday night.

Economic benefits in it include:

• $8.94 million in direct expenditure by visitors

• $9.71 million in the flow-on effects

• $4.97 million in direct local expenditure by Supercars

• $6.5 million in flow-on effects of Supercars Australia’s local spending

“This report confirms what many Novocastrians already knew – the inaugural Newcastle 500 was an outright economic success for the city, with $30 million in direct and indirect economic benefits,” Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said.

Aerial-inside.jpg“Almost 83,000 visitors to the City enjoyed themselves in Newcastle East and Cooks Hill over the three days, accounting together with local attendees for the 192,000 figures previously reported.

“What’s new in this report is the banking data that shows Supercars fans spent up big, with the research demonstrating how the money flowed through the city.”

Visitor outlays were calculated based on transaction data from nine Australian banks.

As most visitors paid for their accommodation costs well in advance of the three-day event, this spend was not included in the report analysis. With it included, the direct visitor expenditure for overnight stays would be considerably higher than the $191 identified in the report.

Costs associated with Council’s multi-million dollar East End civil works program were also excluded on the basis that these scheduled works were brought forward several years to enable the Newcastle 500 to be staged in 2017.

The direct economic injection to local contractors and suppliers amounted to $4.97 million, with an additional $6.5 million in flow-on effects, while the study found 22 out of the 31 food and beverage outlets at the event were from the Newcastle local government area.

“While this research means we can now quantify the economic boost for the city, the advertising benefits from the phenomenal media coverage with regard to long-term tourism are harder to quantify, even though the value of coverage is estimated at $1million,” the Lord Mayor added.

“Mainstream media, the report notes, recorded an audience of 8,641,042 people and social media posts reached 630,000 users, so the race also brings with it enormous potential for tourism growth at a time when the city has never looked so good.

“We wanted to host the event to give the city an economic boost, promote it to the world and celebrate Novocastrian pride and I believe this report provides an emphatic endorsement of that decision.”

HRFC included as part of its analysis the results of a business impact survey commissioned by the Newcastle East Residents Group, which drew 243 responses from businesses inside and outside the event precinct. A range of people were interviewed as part of the study including opponents of the race and members of community groups.

The report identified a range of other benefits for the city, including:

• Familiarising local businesses with operating methods for large events
• 15,000 hours of local labour used by the event’s caterers
• 1,932 local workers allocated tickets
• 744 volunteers gained experience and promoted Newcastle

The total cost of the report including purchase of Telstra and major bank data was $156,000.

LNP DELIVERING TAX RELIEF FOR SMALL & MEDIUM-SIZED BUSINESSES

Millions of small and medium–sized businesses across Australia will pay less tax five years sooner, with new laws fast-tracking tax relief for the sector passing Parliament today.

This is great news for the 3.3 million small and medium-sized businesses and the seven million Australians they employ.

This means businesses will keep more of their own money – that’s money they can invest back into their business, to create jobs, to boost their productivity and grow.

From 2021-22, a business with a turnover below $50 million will have a tax rate of just 25 per cent, five years earlier than planned. Similar timing changes will also apply to the roll out of the 16 per cent tax discount for unincorporated businesses.

For example, a small business such as a café that makes $100,000 profit will have an additional $1,500 in 2020-21 and $2,500 in 2021-22.

Fast-tracking tax relief is part of our plan for a stronger economy and will drive more investment, more jobs and higher wages and builds on the first stage of business tax relief that our Government delivered in May 2017.

Our plan to fast-track tax relief for Australian businesses is an important investment in the future economic growth of our nation.

The Coalition Government’s economic plan is delivering, the economy is growing at 3.4 per cent through the year, our AAA credit rating has been reaffirmed and more than a million jobs have been created, as promised.