POWER FOR PEOPLE & PLANET, BEFORE PROFIT - Building the case for a Vic public-energy retailer.

WHY A VICTORIAN PUBLICLY-OWNED ENERGY RETAILER WOULD HELP THE TRANSITION TO 100% CLEAN, FAIR & AFFORDABLE ENERGY. Victoria's energy system fails the community and the climate.  It allows for massive profits for polluting coal companies, while households face a confusing array of bad deals and overpriced energy. The true cost of coal is obscured by the energy market, indirect Government subsidies and a confusing retail system that fuels climate change and serves consumers poorly. By creating a not-for-profit, publicly owned, renewable-energy-focused energy retailer, Victoria has an opportunity to deliver real solutions to the state - creating more investment in renewables and forcing coal companies to reduce their profits to remain competitive in the market.   Continue reading

A tale of two valleys

The isolation of regional voices & some visions for building resilience. By Zianna Fuad I often find politics becomes removed from it’s real-life repercussions. I often forget the way decisions ripple out over time, changing the ways of things like a railroad switch.  I forever remind myself that politics is not locked in a Parliament room, it’s real and felt and often long-lasting and each time I forget, I am reminded of the cushioning of privilege and its own abstracting lens.     Continue reading

Energy Justice Victoria: Overview & Vision

Quit Coal’s campaign Energy Justice Victoria is pushing for a needs-based energy system that allows access to 100% clean, fair and affordable energy for all.  We want to ensure that while we work for a rapid transition away from coal in Victoria, we address other key problems in the energy market such as corporate corruption, high power prices and energy poverty.  We see public, democratic control and ownership of energy is an essential part of reworking our energy system and transitioning to 100% renewable energy. “The real solutions to the climate crisis are also our best hope of building a much more enlightened economic system, one that closes deep inequalities, strengthens and transforms the public sphere, generates plentiful, dignified work and radically reins in corporate power.” - Klein   Continue reading

Your chance to call for ambitious climate targets in Victoria.

Last year was the world's hottest year on record - even without an El Nino boost. And seven of Australia's ten warmest years have occurred since 2005 [1]. We need to act quickly to limit our greenhouse emissions and reduce the disastrous effects of climate change.   And this year we have an opportunity to do just that.  Victoria will set its first legally binding, Emission Reduction Target (ERT). Victoria will set six interim targets between now and reaching the final target of 0% by 2050, and this is the first legally binding one [see Table 1]. Ambitious targets are essential in driving the transition away from coal to renewable energy.  Thanks to the Climate Change Act 2017 each target has to be more ambitious than the last to ensure a downward trend to the final target of 0% by 2050. This means this first target is really important. The more ambitious it is, the more ambitious each target that follows will have to be. Continue reading

Clean Coal LOL

But Carbon Capture and Storage off Ninety Mile Beach is no laughing matter Golden Beach is an idyllic section of Ninety Mile Beach. It boasts a pristine coastline, plentiful fish, multitudes of birds and the skeletal remains of an 1897 shipwreck. But there is a cloud hanging over this lovely place. A publicly-funded State Government project, called CarbonNet, has earmarked the area for Carbon Storage. This February, seismic testing for a suitable carbon storage site will be undertaken in the waters off Golden Beach. Continue reading

From Rural Victoria to Darwin: Fighting for a Frack-Free Australia

While Jemena carries on with the NT Pipeline construction and the State Government's Inquiry into Unconventional Gas is still underway, communities in the NT are standing up louder than ever against fracking.   As Victorians who continue to feel the relief from our win, we know we haven’t fully won until we have a frack free Australia. In a gesture of support and solidarity, four farmers just traveled over 3000 kms from Victoria to Darwin to rally and stand with communities that are next in line in fighting for land rights, clean water and a safe climate. Continue reading

First year anniversary of Fracking Ban

The 30th of August marks a very special occasion for Victorians: the first anniversary of our state-wide ban on Fracking and unconventional gas.On this day last year the Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews announced a permanent ban on Hydraulic fracking and CSG gas drilling in Victoria. This is the first permanent ban on fracking in the country, and effectively stopped the invasive unconventional gas industry in Victoria in its tracks. Continue reading

Melbourne Protest against Jemena NT Pipeline

Friends of the Earth Melbourne and Quit Coal campaigners joined with concerned citizens gathered outside Jemena’s Melbourne headquarters to protest against the Federal government approval of the Northern Gas Pipeline. The group claimed that the pipeline, if built, will facilitate controversial on-shore unconventional gas fracking in the state and wished to express solidarity with Traditional Owners in the NT. Continue reading

The Latest Inflating Gas Prices – A Whole lot of Hot Air

Since the Victorian Labor Government announced an onshore Gas Ban we’ve been hearing a lot of hot air from the industry about gas shortages and threatened price rises. But what’s really behind the industry hype and what are the facts on gas prices and availability? Despite evidence to the contrary Andrew Smith, chairman of Shell Australia, has continued the line of hyperbole expressed in early August prior to the Victorian decision and the COAG Energy Council meeting. He argued that recent electricity price spikes in South Australia dramatically pointed to the need to expand gas exploration …”without additional gas production spikes in energy prices will continue to hurt consumers and manufacturers,” but it has been found that the price hike was largely the product of gas being linked to the export market resulting in the “very high wholesale gas prices right across the country.” Continue reading

We Won! Victoria is Officially Gasfield Free!

We did it! Today Victoria became the first Australian state to permanently ban the process of fracking to access ‘unconventional’ gas (gases like coal seam gas or CSG, and Shale and Tight gas). We also achieved an extension of the moratorium on onshore conventional gas drilling until 2020. This is an amazing day. It is the result of more than five years of hard work and dedication by many thousands of Victorians. 75 regional communities declared themselves gasfield free during this process. By 2012 we had built enough collective power that we were able to stop all development of onshore gas drilling in our state. Today the ban on fracking was made permanent. This is an incredible win for the communities in regional Victoria who fought for more than five years to gain this ban and their allies in Melbourne (short summary of the campaign available here). Continue reading

Road Trip to Heaven and Hell

Five of us squeezed into Brigit’s car, laughed, talked and ate unusual chocolate while Brigit drove us through the traffic jammed outskirts of Melbourne’s suburbs out into Gippsland. We made it through the fog and strange smells to a tree-lined road and arrived at the Seaspray Lock the Gate meeting in time to catch most of the proceedings and Glenda’s wonderful tucker. This town takes its fight seriously, and we all got down to business. It is a time for everyone’s input to the government’s onshore gas inquiry and the Seaspray community is right onto it. Continue reading

“It’s a marathon fight”: Mirboo North battles against coal

By now most of us are familiar with the little South Gippsland town of Mirboo North (population 2688 or thereabouts).  We know the name because it has been under siege by the threat of mining and unconventional gas for years.  A huge number of local people opposed Mantle Mining’s coal licence application at a public meeting in 2012, and theirs was the only town to host a community forum prior to the publication of the Reith Report.  The people of Mirboo North declared the town coal and gasfield free on the 9th of February 2014, with 96.6% in favour of the declaration. Since then they have seen the extension of the unconventional moratorium, community consultations, and now the Parliamentary Inquiry into Unconventional Gas.  The community has been on alert for a wearying length of time. Continue reading