MPs and Climate Leaders to Speak at No New Coal and Gas Forum


The Australia Institute will host a public forum at St Kilda Town Hall from 6.30pm tonight, Tuesday 11 July for a community discussion about Australia’s plans for an enormous expansion of fossil fuel exports, its impact on the climate and what can be done.

Coal and gas mined in Australia already adds around 1.5 billion tonnes of emissions to the atmosphere every year, and there are over 100 new coal mines and gas fields planned that would add a further 1.7 billion tonnes annually. This is despite calls by the International Energy Agency, United Nations as well as scientists and civil society organisations from Australia and around the world to stop all new investment in fossil fuels.

Key speakers include:

  • Adam Bandt: Greens federal member for Melbourne, Leader of the Australian Greens and spokesperson on the Climate Emergency, Energy and Employment & Industrial Relations.
  • Josh Burns (via pre-recorded video): Labor federal member for Macnamara in the inner south-eastern and bayside suburbs of Melbourne, Chair of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights and Chair of the Foreign Affairs and Aid Subcommittee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.
  • Zoe Daniel (via pre-recorded video): The first woman elected to the federal seat of Goldstein, previously a prominent journalist with almost three decades on the frontline of news and current events, in Australia and internationally.
  • Kavita Naidu: Fijian Australian, human rights lawyer and feminist climate activist.
  • Polly Hemming (MC): Director of the Australia Institute’s Climate and Energy Program.
  • Dr Richard Dennis: leading economist and Executive Director of The Australia Institute.

“If there is no plan for getting off coal and gas, there is no plan for climate change,” said Adam Bandt, Member for Melbourne and Leader of the Australian Greens.

“In the Pacific islands, frontline communities are already experiencing the devastating impacts of a 1.2C temperature rise. It is utterly dishonest for Australia to be spruiking its climate credentials while subsidising vast new fossil fuel projects that are endangering Pacific as well as Australian lives,” said Kavita Naidu, Fijian Australian, human rights lawyer and feminist climate activist.

“Australia has over 100 new coal and gas projects listed as ‘in development’ despite the rhetoric of state and federal governments on climate. There is no room in the global carbon budget for just one of these new projects, let alone 100,” said Polly Hemming, Director of the Climate and Energy program at The Australia Institute.

“The simple truth is that Australia is still failing to transition away from fossil fuels. If a climate policy does nothing to stop new gas and coalmines getting built then it’s not a climate policy, it’s a cover story,” said Richard Denniss, Executive Director of The Australia Institute.