Climate election calls for leadership, not fearmongering

SYDNEY, May 2 2019 - Today’s “independent” modelling from fossil fuel industry economist Brian Fisher is a misleading distraction from the important issues, says leading environmental organisation Greenpeace Australia Pacific.

The research, cited in today’s Australian, does not take into account the proven economic benefits of renewable energy cited in any number of reports by independent experts over the last five years, including lower power prices and jobs in renewable energy.

Mr Fisher – who has written at least nine reports for coal and oil companies over the past decade – also fails to consider the huge economic cost of failure to act on climate change in Australia¹.

“Australian voters are sick of politicians kicking the can down the road and using misleading research like Brian Fisher’s as an excuse to avoid taking action on climate change,” said David Ritter, CEO of Greenpeace Australia Pacific.

“Poll after poll shows Australians are demanding action on climate change – every month brings more extreme weather and more pollution and we’ve all had enough.

“This latest attempted distraction is just further proof that the Morrison government will do anything to get the spotlight – but do nothing to tackle the issues that Australian voters actually care about.”

While it is unclear who paid for the Baeconomics report by Mr Fisher, officials from the Department of Energy and Environment testified to Senate Estimates on April 5 that it was not commissioned by federal government.

“Greenpeace wants to see both major parties taking a stronger stand on climate damage, which study after study has shown impacting the health, wellbeing and economic future of Australian families everywhere,” said David Ritter.

Failure to comply with the Paris Accord and keep global warming well below two degrees is forecast to cost each Australian household $14,000 a year in the long term and polling consistently shows taking action on climate change is a key issue for Australian voters ².

For interviews with Greenpeace campaigners:

Martin Zavan, Greenpeace Australia Pacific Communications Campaigner

0424 295 422 | [email protected]greenpeace.org

Notes to the editor:

  1. The Effects of Climate Change on GDP by Country and the Global Economic Gains From Complying With the Paris Climate Accord – Tom Kompas (University of Melbourne) Pham Van Ha (Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU), and Tuong Nhu Che (CSIRO) https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1029/2018EF000922

  2. On 3 March 2019, a uComms/ReachTel national poll of 2134 respondents commissioned by Greenpeace Australia Pacific showed climate change had overtaken the economy, and health and hospitals to be the topic most likely to decide the respondents’ vote. 61.6% of those polled thought the Liberal government were not doing enough to lower Australia’s climate emissions.

An IPSOS poll from 28 March 2019 shows only 13 per cent of Australians think the Government is taking climate change seriously enough.