NSW’s leading conservation groups have welcomed the Greens’ State Election Plan released yesterday as the first major policy announcement of the campaign to recognise climate change, the protection of nature and sustainability as key election issues.
The groups recently launched Natural Advantage, a detailed report on the 99 policy solutions needed for NSW to enter a new era of investment in a healthier environment, and called for the environment to be made a central part of the election campaign. The Greens’ State Election Plan outlined commitment on many of the important opportunities outlined in Natural Advantage and provides strong strategic direction for better environmental outcomes in NSW.
“With less than six weeks until the State election, the Greens are the first political leaders to answer our calls for bold leadership to reduce carbon pollution and restore our natural environment to health,” said Nature Conservation Council of NSW Chief Executive Officer, Pepe Clarke.
“For too long NSW has languished as Australia’s biggest carbon polluter, with little government action to break our overreliance on coal‐fired power. We support the proposal to replace existing coal‐fired power stations with modern solar thermal energy generation as the sort of fresh thinking needed for the new clean‐energy economy,” he said.
“The NSW planning system has failed our communities and environment with bad decisions leaving a swathe of inappropriate development and habitat destruction across our state,” said Total Environment Centre, Executive Director, Jeff Angel.
“The Greens have joined the Coalition in sounding the death knell for controversial Part 3A planning laws with both parties committed to repeal this controversial power. However, the broader challenge remains of restoring meaningful community participation and integrating environmental sustainability into the NSW planning process,” he said.
“The Greens’ support for the expansion of marine sanctuaries in poorly protected bioregions is a significant step towards protecting our oceans and marine life, particularly in areas of need such as the Hawkesbury Shelf between Newcastle and Wollongong,” said National Parks Association of NSW, Executive Officer, Kevin Evans.
“Both the Labor and Coalition have so far failed to grab the opportunity for presenting the community with visionary environmental policy and strategies, but we hope they will seize the chance in coming weeks. The future health and wellbeing of our state depends on it,” he said.
Natural Advantage was produced by the Nature Conservation Council, National Parks Association, Total Environment Centre, Blue Mountains Conservation Society, Colong Foundation for Wilderness and The Wilderness Society.
Nature Conservation Council of NSW, Pepe Clarke 0402 325 471
Total Environment Centre, Jeff Angel 02 9261 3437
National Parks Association of NSW, Kevin Evans 0457 797 977
The Wilderness Society, Belinda Fairbrother 0405 082 396