Immediate solutions in a climate emergency

In The Sustainable Hour on 21 February 2018, we talk about why we need to draw down massive amounts of greenhouse gases for a safe climate – and about how we can do it. The program features three presentations which where held at the Sustainable Living Festival on 10 February 2018 about climate messaging, drawdown, regenerative living and biochar production.

Jane Morton from the Victorian Climate Action Network and the Climate Emergency Declaration petition talks about why the climate movement’s fear of mentioning the climate emergency, because it is said to make people disconnect and disengage from the issue, is actually a really bad idea.

• Professor Justin Borevitz from the ANU Climate Change Institute talks about why he thinks the Sustainable Living Festival is going to morph into becoming a ‘Regenerative Living Festival’

• Dr Adrian Morphett explains about biochar production. His company Green Man Char works with Manningham City Council on turning waste tree clippings into biochar. He is a committee member of the International Biochar Initiative which has a goal of producing one billion tonnes biochar – that’s one gigatonnes – within 50 years.

• Master of Ceremonies at the Sustainable Living Festival’s ‘Drawdown for a safe climate’ panel session was Adrian Whitehead, co-founder of Beyond Zero Emissions, Community Action for the Climate Emergency (CACE) and the Save the Planet party.

More info below.



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Content of this hour

Links, excerpts and more information about what we talked about in this Sustainable Hour


Jane Morton: Why we should mention the emergency


If you are interested in the topic of how we get more people to listen and take action on climate issues, clinical psychologist and climate emergency campaigner Jane Morton’s 45-minute presentation provides some food for thought.

We are at a point where the truth is frightening. Some say we must protect people from ‘doom and gloom’ and not mention the climate emergency. This talk by Jane Morton explains that the messages that move people to action combine emotionally compelling description of a serious, personally relevant threat with emotionally compelling description of solutions that will fully address the threat, and indicate a clear path to take action.

» Share it from YouTube.com





“Australia will be relegated to a rust-bucket economy and bypassed by global capital as the rest of the world moves rapidly now to recognise in a climate emergency we have to act. And if Australia just confines itself to quarry status, everyone else is going to move on with the new technologies, new jobs.”
~ Christine Milne, former leader of the Australian Greens

Reversing climate change festival

The Sustainable Living Festival in Melbourne this year had the climate emergency as its theme, and featured a series of interesting lectures and debates reflecting on the emergency as well as the further development of climate action campaigning – about the Australian climate movement’s strategies and messaging, etc. We will be posting more recordings from the festival in the coming weeks.

In the meanwhile, the festival still runs two more weeks, so if you live in Victoria, check the program on www.slf.org.au




» Read more on www.climateemergencydeclaration.org






CLIMATE REALITY PROJECT:

What psychology can teach us about inspiring climate action

1. Connect the climate crisis to what’s happening in real communities to reduce psychological distance
2. Make climate action a group experience to promote social norms
3. Talk about what we’re gaining, not what we’re losing, to avoid loss aversion
4. Give your friends real ways to take action to prevent “environmental melancholia”

» Climate Reality Project – 5 February 2018:
Four lessons psychology teaches us about inspiring climate action
“Changing the behavior of one person is hard enough – let alone millions of citizens around the world. Find out what lessons psychology can teach us about inspiring climate action.”


Video about the American climate emergency group The Climate Mobilization

“The only precedent for the scale of action required to solve the climate crisis is the United States homefront mobilization during WWII. During that time, our economy transformed for the war effort in four years, industry shattered every record for production speed, up to 40 percent of vegetables were grown in peoples’ lawns and the country saw virtually full employment. The attacks on Pearl Harbor woke Americans up after years of denial about the Axis threat. But it’s up to ordinary people to wake America up to the climate crisis and initiate a just emergency climate mobilization from the bottom up.”
~ The Climate Mobilization



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“We run pretty much every single day. We sell to market. There is no reason why an operation like ours couldn’t be installed in every greenwaste depo in Australia.”
~ Dr Adrian Morphett, biochar producer

Rebuilding a safe climate

To return to safe levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere – the famous 350 parts per million – we have got to figure out how we can rapidly drawdown huge amounts of carbon.

The trouble is that we now have burned so much oil, coal and gas and put so much carbon and other greenhouse gases in the air that it has destabilised our planet’s climate. So even if we manage to quickly transform our society into a zero emissions society with 100% renewable energy, zero waste, active transport and electric cars, changing our diet and composting and all the rest – this still won’t be enough to avoid a global catastrophe with melting poles and glaciers, rising sea levels and all that follows. UNLESS we figure out how we can drawdown carbon, so that the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere reach a peak and then begin to decline.

That’s not just theory. Right now there is a range of immediate actions we can take to drawdown our past emissions, to take it backwards, to rebuild a safe climate. A session at the Sustainable Living Festival’s Big Weekend in Melbourne offered a panel of four experts who each told their positive stories about how they explore, experiment and gather experience with different ways of drawing down the CO2, all of which have multiple benefits.

‘Drawdown for a safe climate’ was the title of the hour. The speakers were:

Professor Justin Borevitz


• Professor Justin Borevitz from the ANU Climate Change Institute – about why he thinks the Sustainable Living Festival could develop into a ‘Regenerative Living Festival’

Farmer Deane Belfield


• Farmer Deane Belfield about Regenerative farming, Soil organic carbon and biological batteries

Dr Adrian Morphett


• Dr Adrian Morphett from Green Man Char about biochar production. Works with Manningham City Council on turning waste tree clippings into biochar. He is a committee member of the International Biochar Initiative which has a goal of producing one billion tonnes biochar, that’s one gigatonnes, within 50 years.




Dr Chris Taylor


• Dr Chris Taylor about forest carbon and forest repair. The next period of logging in old Victorian forests will see about 20 million tonnes of carbon emitted into the atmosphere, whereas the forest has the capacity to sequester 100 million tonnes if we just leave it alone.

Adrian Whitehead


• Master of Ceremonies was Adrian Whitehead, co-founder Beyond Zero Emissions, CACE and Save the Planet.




» On 19 July 2017 in The Sustainable Hour on 94.7 The Pulse, talked about natural and agricultural solutions to the climate change crisis with to natural sequence farming expert Peter Andrews. The podcast page contains links to numerous other initiatives and articles about regenerative carbon sequestration.



Re: drawdown – see also:




» New Scientist – 21 February 2018:
Rock dusting on farms could cool the climate, so let’s try it
“Crushed basalt applied to agricultural land could soak up billions of tons of carbon dioxide and boost crops. Let’s put it to the test, says Olive Heffernan.”



» Business Green – 19 February 2018:
Offset reset? Climeworks secures ‘historic’ first contracts for CO2-sucking system
“Swiss firm claims ‘historic’ deals mark the first time a company has been commissioned to permanently remove CO2 from the atmosphere.”

» UPI – 19 February 2018:
Growing crops with crushed rocks could reduce CO2 emissions
“”Strategies for taking CO2 out of the atmosphere are now on the research agenda and we need realistic assessment of these strategies, what they might be able to deliver, and what the challenges are,” said researcher James Hansen.”

» Futurity – 9 February 2018:
‘Agroforestry’ may be new weapon in climate change fight
“Agroforestry could play an important role in mitigating climate change because it sequesters more atmospheric carbon in plant parts and soil than conventional farming, report researchers.”

» National Observer – 9 February 2018:
There are climate solutions in our soil
“Alberta — home to one-third of Canada’s agricultural land — could put a big dent in its carbon footprint by transitioning to organic agriculture.”

» The Guardian – 4 February 2018:
How Bill Gates aims to clean up the planet
“It’s a simple idea: strip CO2 from the air and use it to produce carbon-neutral fuel. But can it work on an industrial scale?”






A new water paradigm

Rain for Climate works with transforming a damaged developed territory into a healthy, functional land with replenished resources:

“Are humans capable of reversing the destructive course of climate change? This international expert team has been working relentlessly on understanding the causes of climate change ever since the 1980s. They found a scientifically sound and verifiable explanation, developed a solution and put it to the test at different locations.

To cut the story short, regardless of the type of landscape we create water retention measures to retain water in the country, regulate local temperature and restore more stable weather patterns. It worked perfectly! Even more, these proof of concept locations worldwide are doing well, and people are learning about the solution from there.” 

» www.rainforclimate.com



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“Things are changing in the bush. We know the future of our regional communities doesn’t lie at the bottom of a gas well or a coal mine. Most farmers support action to reduce emissions, and are already implementing solutions – from climate-smart agriculture to renewable energy. But our political representatives haven’t kept up. Rural Australia needs leaders with the strength to champion policies to reduce Australia’s carbon pollution – pollution that harms our livelihoods and risks a situation where our kids can’t choose to farm the way we do.” 
~ Verity Morgan-Schmidt, CEO, Australian Farmers for Climate Action




 ADDITIONALLY: 

In other news

From our notes of this week: news stories and events we didn’t have time to mention but which we think you should know about


GEELONG:

Ecological footprint market and Pumpkin Fair

Focus on sustainability on Saturday 24 March 2018 from 10am to 4pm in Leopold

Encompass Community Services is a local non-profit organisation supporting people with disabilities and disadvantaged backgrounds for over 30 years. For the 4th year in a row, they organise their annual Pumpkin Fair, an event put together by people of all abilities and backgrounds.

This year they will focus on sustainable living, and they have added Ecological Footprint Market in all of their promotional initiatives, with the aim to encourage everyone to take that bold step in accelerating sustainable living practices in their everyday lives. 

They are doing this in partnership with the Leopold Community and Learning Centre.

The fair is on Saturday 24 March 2018 from 10am to 3pm, at the Encompass seven-acre farm The Paddock on O’Halloran Rd (off Melaluka Rd) in Leopold.

This is where they grow their pumpkins and other produce, fresh, spray free and grown without any chemicals.

Encompass Community Services do conduct farm tours on fair day and also allow the public to pick their own produce. They even have a wood oven that is fired up on the day to make pizzas – toppings are from the farm itself – a total paddock to plate experience.

They have chickens as well, so free range eggs are available at the fair.

Apart from the usual fair staples – live music and entertainment, sausage sizzle, market stalls, face painting, spinning wheel, raffle, etc) – the Pumpkin Fair features interactive children’s activities and running sustainable living workshops too.

Some ideas for children’s activities are: creating/making items from recycled materials, how to plant tomatoes, how to create herb garden – and more

A few sustainable living workshop plans include: worm farming, composting, plant propagation from cuttings, sustainable gardening, making jams/relishes/preserves, waste segregation, aquaponics, etc.  (A program of activities/workshop is currently in progress and will be released soon).

There is also a life skills support program, Options & Connections, with workshops where the raw materials are sourced directly from the farm. Using the herbs and produce from the farm, Encompass Community Services are making tea (peppermint, chamomile, lemon balm), herbal oils (rosemary, thyme, sage, lemon balm, lavender), lavender sugar (a healthier alternative to your usual sugar) and pumpkin spice.

Be a part of the Pumpkin Fair. You can call 5222 3377 for further information.

Saturday 24 March 2018 from 10am to 3pm
Address: 21–29 O’Halloran Road, Leopold, Victoria
Email: info@encompass-cs.org.au
Web: www.encompass-cs.org.au



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MELBOURNE:

Renewables film screening: ‘The race is on’


A roadmap for a clean energy future which explores the social, environmental, economic and psychological changes that are needed to lead us to a sustainable, renewable energy economy by 2040.

‘The Race is On’ shows us how our societies can be transformed into an ultra-low carbon way of living fit for our children’s future.
This is not a fantasy, all the technologies needed to succeed are already here. The film showcases innovative solutions and lays out a clear and exciting plan for action to help build the world we need.

This utterly huge shift may be the greatest and most urgent transformation of our generation – it’s a race against time.
The Race is On, exposes how serious the climate change threat is, but also how near we are to ensuring we avoid its most dangerous consequences.

Featuring contributions from world leading experts on the science, policy, economics and community, Race is On will  generate urgent discussions on how we can act now to avoid disaster.

Presented by Melbourne Sustainability Society Institute (MSSI)

Thursday 1 March 2018 at 6:15–8:00pm
CINEMA NOVA, 380 LYGON ST CARLTON
COST: FULL TICKET: $20.50  – CONCESSION TICKET: $16

» Read more on www.slf.org.au/event/race



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Help clean up Australia

Newsletter from Carbon Reduction Institute:

Approximately 5% of all the world’s greenhouse gas emissions are generated from poorly managed landfill sites…

Worse still is the waste that is not disposed of correctly and creates issues such as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and the resulting micro plastics which are eaten by smaller fish and pass their way up to our food chain. Around 8 million tonnes of plastic flow into the oceans every year, and vast amounts more end up in bushlands, across the outback.

There are few more issues greater than how we manage the rubbish we create. Avoiding littering, increasing access to recycling and composting, and better managing landfill sites, are practices which have all been improving but to avoid the growing number of waste issues we must rapidly increase the speed at which we improve.

The easiest waste to deal with is that which is not produced; reducing packaging collected at the point of sale reduces the demand and therefore the volume.

At a household level, it’s as simple as avoiding single-use plastic bags and non-reusable bottles and replacing those with reusable shopping bags and bottles. In production and distribution, companies can look at using reusable straps instead of pallet wrap, or cardboard protection instead of polystyrene.

While these actions take more planning, right now there is something we can all do, and that is take part in Business Clean Up Day on Tuesday, February 27, one of three nationwide environmental campaigns under the Clean Up Australia Day umbrella. The others are a youth/schools’ event on March 2, and a general community clean-up on March 4.

As part of the Business Clean Up Day, CRI (a major sponsor) is working with Clean Up Australia Day to make the February 27 event, Carbon Neutral. Not only will organisers ensure rubbish is removed and disposed of correctly, but also that it is done without any additional impact on our climate.
~ Rob Cawthorne, Managing Director, Carbon Reduction Institute



» Click here for more details on who’s in the burgeoning Low Carbon Economy Directory – and how you too can sign on.

Carbon Reduction Institute
Suite 1304, 213 Miller Street, North Sydney, NSW 2060

» Website: www.noco2.com.au

» Newsletter source



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New clean energy targets put South Australia on the world map

Clean Energy Council media release on Wednesday 21 February 2018

The new renewable energy and energy storage targets announced by the South Australian Government are genuinely world-class ambitions that help to put the state’s clean energy achievements on the world map, the Clean Energy Council said today.

Clean Energy Council Chief Executive Kane Thornton said the South Australian Government had shown that it is a national and international leader in the uptake of renewable energy and the transition of its energy sector.

“The energy storage target in particular is exactly what is needed to help deliver higher levels of wind and solar while ensuring the ongoing reliability of the power system. Both the 75 per cent renewable energy target and the new energy storage target underline the state’s many clean energy achievements, from working with Tesla and Neoen to build the world’s largest lithium-ion battery to producing half of SA’s power from renewables,” Mr Thornton said.

“South Australia has shown that it is possible to deliver electricity that is both reliable and clean, and as more low-cost renewable energy enters the power system it will push power prices down for homes and businesses. The government is driving a shift toward clean energy which will reduce its exposure to volatile fossil fuel prices and make the state much more competitive in the future – while creating business opportunities in the here and now.

“One thing our industry has shown is that if you give us a target or a goal, we will beat it. South Australia has essentially met its existing renewable energy target seven years early, and there are now enough projects which will go ahead to meet the national 2020 renewable energy project. The expertise and efficiency our industry has built up is remarkable,” he said.

The Clean Energy Council has released an eight-point plan ahead of the election to unlock a battery revolution in South Australia. In some respects the state government has gone above and beyond these recommendations.

Mr Thornton said the industry welcomed the support of both the South Australian Liberal Party and SA Best for the solar thermal plant in Port Augusta, as well as the Liberals’ previously-announced plan for more batteries in the state’s households. The industry is looking forward to further strong announcements on energy from both parties, he said.



» 9news – 21 February 2018:
SA Labor looks to generate 75 percent of state energy from renewable sources if re-elected



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» Handelsblatt – 19 February 2018:
German businesses outpace politicians on carbon issues
“The country’s corporate titans have climate goals that are more ambitious than their government’s, and see unified carbon pricing as key to combating global warming.”

» Futurism – 9 February 2018:
Want a World Without Blackouts? Power the Future With Renewable Energy
“The researchers that developed a roadmap toward 100 percent renewable energy adoption have now come up with solutions that can make clean energy a stable source of power for the electric grid. The key is energy storage and political cooperation.”

» Forbes – 20 February 2018:
More Energy Giants Moving Toward A Renewable Energy Future
“A number of the larger European energy companies are making moves to embrace and propel the sustainable emerging energy economy.”

» Metricon:

Solar on half of new homes

“With the cost of electricity going up, and the cost of solar going down, including battery storage and rooftop PV in new home packages is soon ‘just going to be the norm’, says Australian home builder Metricon. Already, they’re putting them in around half of the new homes they build.”

» One Step Off The Grid – 14 February 2018:
New build homes with solar and storage? “It’s going to be the norm”

» State of Green – 20 February 2018:
Electrolysis cells allow for large-scale energy storage
“The Technical University of Denmark has tested the ability of electrolysis cells to store power generated by wind turbines at a wind farm on the Danish island of Bornholm.”

» One Step Off The Grid – 21 February 2018:
Tesla battery + solar now “significantly cheaper” than grid power



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Crowdorganising film screening of ‘A Plastic Ocean’

Geelong Inter-Church Social Justice Network (GICSJN) is hosting a special one-time screening of the PG film A PLASTIC OCEAN on Monday 12 March at 6:30pm at Village Cinemas Geelong.

To ensure this film goes ahead, 57 tickets need to be sold by Monday 5 March 2018. If successful, further tickets will be available to purchase up to 12 March 2018. To purchase tickets please go to: www.tickets.demand.film/event/3703

Hope to see you there!

About ‘A Plastic Ocean’
‘A PLASTIC OCEAN’ begins when journalist Craig Leeson, searching for the elusive blue whale, discovers plastic waste in what should be pristine ocean. In this adventure documentary, Craig teams up with free diver Tanya Streeter and an international team of scientists and researchers, and they travel to twenty locations around the world over the next four years to explore the fragile state of our oceans, uncover alarming truths about plastic pollution, and reveal working solutions that can be put into immediate effect.

Year: 2016
Genre: Documentary – Environmental
Classification: PG
Director: Craig Leeson



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Cycling Without Age in Geelong

Geelong Sustainability is collaborating with Cycling Geelong and Multicultural Aged Care Services Geelong (MACS) to establish a Geelong chapter of this wonderful global cycling initiative.

MACS has purchased one custom-made electric assisted trike and a second has been purchased by fund-raising. Initial cyclist-pilot training sessions are currently underway at MACS. Interest would be welcomed from other prospective cycling pilots.

Geelong Sustainability hopes the program will spread across our region as other facilities get involved. Arcare at Point Lonsdale has recently purchased one trike.

About Cycling Without Age
Cycling Without Age started in Copenhagen in 2012. The aim is for those who would not normally be able to ride bicycles to be armchair passengers on a slow trishaw ride within their local area. The participants can enjoy the friendship of volunteer cyclist-pilots and reconnect with their local communities. Participants may includes the residents of aged care facilities, others in supported accommodation, and those who cannot or can no longer ride bikes.

In only five years, Cycling Without Age has spread to 37 countries including Australia. In this time over 1,500 electric trishaws have been pedalled by more than 10,000 pilots on over 50,000 rides.

The motto of Cycling Without Age is ‘The right to wind in your hair’. The guiding principles are Generosity, Slow cycling, Storytelling, Relationships and Without Age.

» CWA International: www.cyclingwithoutage.org

» CWA Australia: www.cyclingwithoutage.org.au

Facebook pages:
» www.facebook.com/cyclingwithoutage

» www.facebook.com/groups/653370571483189

» www.facebook.com/groups/cyclingwithoutage



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Katharine Hayhoe: Does messaging with fear really work?

If people don’t care about climate change, the best way to get them on board is to scare the pants off them, right?
Global Weirding with Katharine Hayhoe published on 31 January 2018.



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“How to hit the brakes”


» Bloomberg video:
How to Hit the Brakes on Climate Change

“Under 50% of banks have hard targets for low carbon products. Most banks failing to ingrain climate strategy into business.”


» Bloomberg – 15 February 2018:
Banks Told They’re Lagging on Response to Climate Risks



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Quality of life for seven billion

No nation currently meets the basic needs of its citizens in a sustainable way

Can we provide good lives for the seven billion people on Earth without wrecking the planet? The answer is uncomfortable. After looking at data on quality of life and use of resources from some 150 countries, they found that no nation currently meets the basic needs of its citizens in a sustainable way. The nations of the world either don’t provide the basics of a good life or they do it at excessive cost in resources, or they fail at both.

Daniel O’Neill of the University of Leeds and colleagues asked this enormous question in a recent paper in the journal Nature Sustainability and on an accompanying website:

» A Good Life For All Within Planetary Boundaries



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“A striking new study published yesterday in the journal Nature Communications suggests that sea-level rise—one of the biggest consequences of global warming—will still be happening 300 years from now, even if humans stop emitting greenhouse gases before the end of the current century.”

» Scientific American – 21 February 2018:
Seas Will Rise for 300 Years
“And the longer it takes to reduce carbon emissions, the higher they will go.”

» SBS – 21 February 2018:
Seas will rise a metre even if goals met
“Cuts to greenhouse gas emissions would limit a rise in sea levels, driven by melting ice, but levels may still rise up to 1.2 metres in the next 200 years.”

» Reuters – 20 February 2018:
Seas to rise about a metre even if climate goals are met – study
“Ice thawing from Greenland to Antarctica will redraw global coastlines, scientists say. Sea levels to rise by 0.7-1.2 metres by 2300 -study. Seas to rise even if nations achieve Paris climate goals. Early action can limit damage.”

» Washington Post – 19 February 2018:
The world is failing to slow global warming
“Countries made only modest climate-change promises in Paris. They’re falling short anyway. ‘It’s not fast enough. It’s not big enough. There’s not enough action.’ Many nations aren’t living up to their promises in the 2015 Paris climate accord, and the consequences could be ‘catastrophic’.”

» The Guardian – 13 February 2018:
Melting ice sheets are hastening sea level rise, satellite data confirms
“Research shows that pace of melting in Antarctica and Greenland has accelerated

» The Guardian – 19 February 2018:
Bill Shorten says there’s a ‘role for coal’ and Adani mine just ‘another project’
“Labor leader’s comments come during visit to Queensland and follow CFMEU’s warning that ALP’s blocking of Carmichael mine would open divisive debate”

» The Conversation – 22 February 2018:
Should Australia recognise the human right to a healthy environment?

» The Verge – 20 February 2018:
If climate change wrecks your city, can it sue Exxon?
“Scientists can now link disasters to climate change, opening the door to lawsuits against fossil fuel companies. “Are the oil companies going to stick the public with the bill after they’ve reaped untold profits and lied to us?””






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Book:

‘Connect – Practical ways to grow and prepare sustainable food’

Many families have recipes and even recipe books that pass down through the generations. This practice not only maintains culinary culture but connects people with their food and gardens. Kylie Treble, a passionate advocate of sustainable food, has created such a book for her own family and local community, and also for the rest of us.

Self-published under the name of her farm The Place of Wonder, ‘Connect: Practical ways to grow and prepare sustainable food’ is structured around 20 temperate and cool-climate crops with at least five delicious recipes per section, inter-dispersed with edited notes from her diary and cooking and gardening journals.

» www.theplaceofwonder.com.au/book



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Toxic and under-regulated: Australia’s coal-fired power stations

Emissions limits weaker than international standards

Did you know Victoria’s three coal-fired power stations emit such high levels of toxic pollution that if they were in the United States they would need to install pollution controls or be closed down?

Environmental Justice Australia (EJA) asked Dr Ranajit (Ron) Sahu, an air quality expert with extensive experience in the design of pollution control equipment for coal-fired power stations in the US, to analyse the emissions from Victoria’s coal-fired power stations to include in EJA’s submission to the Victorian EPA’s review of the power station licences.

Among other revelations Dr Sahu’s analysis found:

  • Mercury emissions from Victoria’s coal-fired power stations are likely to be significantly higher than what is being reported to the National Pollutants Inventory – and around five times higher than what would be permitted in the US
  • Toxic emissions – sulfur dioxide (SO2), oxides of nitrogen (NOx), carbon dioxide (CO2) and mercury – from Victoria’s power stations can and should be continuously and automatically monitored, as they are in the US
  • There are no technological barriers to installing pollution control systems at the three Victorian power stations – controls such as flue gas desulfurisation to reduce sulfur and selective catalytic reduction to control NOx could reduce their toxic emissions by as much as 90%.

Mercury is nasty stuff. A December 2016 statement by the Australian Government says mercury “can cause a range of adverse health impacts which include; cognitive impairment (mild mental retardation), permanent damage to the central nervous system, kidney and heart disease, infertility, and respiratory, digestive and immune problems. It is strongly advised that pregnant women, infants, and children in particular avoid exposure.”

For a number of months the EPA has been quietly conducting a review of the licences of the three big coal-fired power stations in Victoria – AGL’s Loy Yang A, Alinta’s Loy Yang B and EnergyAustralia’s Yallourn plants – liaising directly with the power station operators.

Some stakeholders (including EJA) have been invited to participate in a restricted written submission process.

But so far there has been no way for concerned members of the public to contribute to this process.

On such an important issue that affects all of us, we reckon the people should be able to have their say. So we’ve set up an easy way for you to email the relevant minister, Lily D’Ambrosio, and the head of the EPA, Nial Finegan, to let them know what changes you think the EPA should make to the power station licences. Click on the link below.

It’s important the Minister and the EPA know your views as they make this important decision. Let’s make our voices heard!

Please take a moment to send an email now and share this ink with your friends and family. We are posting on Facebook and tweeting about this licence review too. We hope you’ll share and like to spread the word.

Nicola, Bronya, James and Josh
EJA’s Coal & Health team

More info

» Send a message to Victoria’s Energy Minister and the CEO of the EPA



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VICTORIA:

Reject the licence extensions for brown coal mines

Send your message to Victoria’s Resources Minister and urge him to reject the licence renewals and protect our climate

EnergyAustralia and AGL want to renew their licences to mine brown coal until 2050 and 2065 respectively. That could allow the power stations to mine and burn coal into the middle of the century!

We all want a future with clean air, clean water and a thriving natural world, and any move that makes it easier to mine and burn toxic brown coal puts that all at risk.

Can you write to Resources Minister and Treasurer Tim Pallas and ask him to reject these licence extensions? The application is currently sitting on his desk. With enough community pressure, we may be able to stop this.

» Send the letter via www.environmentvictoria.org.au


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» Petitions you could sign





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icon_small-arrow_RIGHT Podcasts and posts about climate change

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Acknowledgement

We at The Sustainable Hour would like to pay our respect to the traditional custodians of the land on which we are broadcasting, the Wathaurong People, and pay our respect to their elders, past, present and future.

The traditional owners lived in harmony with the environment and with the climate for hundreds of generations. It is not clear – yet – that as European settlers we have demonstrated that we can live in harmony for hundreds of generations, but it is clear that we can learn from the indigenous, traditional owners of this land.

When we talk about the future, it means extending our respect to those children not yet born, the generations of the future – remembering the old saying that…



The decisions currently being made around Australia to ignore climate change are being made by those who won’t be around by the time the worst effects hit home. How utterly disgusting, disrespectful and unfair is that?




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4. Maybe support us financially? Even a small donation will make a difference – in particular with printing expenses.

 

 


 

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“Participation – that’s what’s gonna save the human race.”
~ Pete Seeger, American singer