Victorian Socialists

Last assessment: 2022-10-13 16:39:32

Climate change

The climate emergency is a dire threat to our natural environment, our water resources, our food supply and the liveability of our cities. Instead of funding adaptation, in the 2022 budget the Andrews government reduced climate change spending by 40 percent, to just $28 million. Victoria is one of the world’s largest per-capita emitters of greenhouse gases, but we also have the resources and skills to develop a renewable energy economy, which would revitalise the state’s dying manufacturing industry, and provide quality, skilled jobs for tens of thousands of people. Instead, Labor has lifted a ban on new gas development, opening the door to new projects that will lock in new fossil fuel emissions, damage local ecosystems and do nothing to arrest our current trajectory towards catastrophic climate change.

What we think

  1. Climate change is a direct product of the capitalist world economy, which turns everything in the natural environment into a resource exploitable for private profits.
  2. Climate change cannot be addressed through market mechanisms; it requires a comprehensive restructuring of the economy.
  3. The high concentration of greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere means that “net-zero emissions” will not be enough to curtail dangerous global warming; net-negative emissions will be required to reduce greenhouse gas levels.
  4. Nuclear power is neither clean nor renewable.
  5. The effects of climate change are disproportionately felt by people on low incomes; their lives and livelihoods need to be protected not only from changes to the climate, but during the transition to a new economy.
  6. The economic burden of dealing with climate change must fall primarily on those who have profited from destroying the environment: the rich and the big polluters.

What we’ll fight for

  1. Reduce emissions by 75 percent below 2005 levels by 2030, achieve a zero-carbon economy by 2035 and a permanent net-negative emissions economy by 2040.
  2. Phase out the use of coal for electricity generation by 2030. 
  3. Reverse Labor’s lifting of the ban on new gas projects and prohibit the development of all new fossil fuel projects and exports: Environmental approvals for new resource developments to be contingent on carbon-neutrality.
  4. Stop the establishment of a nuclear power industry in the state.
  5. Urgently construct solar and wind farms and upgrade the power grid with battery storage to enable the quick transition of Victorian homes and businesses to an all-electric, post-gas energy system.
  6. Establish a renewables manufacturing industry (solar photovoltaic, lithium-ion battery and electric vehicles), with guaranteed secure jobs and retraining for workers from the fossil fuel industry.
  7. Make 100 percent of all new car sales electric vehicles by 2030.
  8. Establish 1,500 electric vehicle charging stations across Victoria by 2028.
  9. Fund research into adaptation strategies to protect biodiversity, water resources and agricultural yields. 
  10. End logging of remaining forest habitats to protect water catchments, biodiversity and terrestrial carbon stores. Establish programs of reforestation and restoration of native grasslands and wetlands.
  11. Adapt our cities to heat extremes by increasing urban tree canopy.
  12. Repeal the Labor government’s anti-protest laws, which are being used to target opponents of environmental vandalism.