Who says? Public support for environmental advocacy

by Tom Swann

The mining and forestry lobby campaign to remove tax-deductibility for certain non-for-profit organisations they deem contrary to their business interests, does not have the support of the Australian public, according to new polling. 

Hearings recommence tomorrow in the Government’s inquiry into the administration, transparency and effectiveness of the Register of Environmental Organisations. 

Many Coalition politicians and mining lobby groups say the public expects tax-deductible donations to be banned for environmental advocacy. But the Australia Institute commissioned national polling of 1,408 people, which found:

  • Most Australians support tax-deductible donations to a wide range of advocacy activities, including:
    • advocacy to change environmental policy (68 per cent),
    • environmental campaigning (68 per cent) and
    • legal cases to uphold existing environmental law (55 per cent).
  • Only 27 per cent said environment groups had too much influence in public debates, while 34 per cent said they had not enough influence.
  • By contrast, most people said big business (62 per cent) and mining companies (58 per cent) had too much influence. 

Full report