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reflected in the soaring commodity prices and impending shortages

in the financial markets. We must realise that fossil-fuelled energy is

unpromising for our future economy and world. The global

environment with its finite resources should be a common concern

of all peoples. Our country is one of the countries most at risk from

climate change according to the Stern Review and the Garnaut

Climate Change reports. Practical, efficient, sustainable solutions

are in need and renewable energy technologies will provide these

opportunities for mitigating greenhouse gases.

Investing in clean, safe and reliable technology is the most

practical and obvious solution. Billions of dollars must be redirected

from subsidiaries in the coal industry to be invested in renewable

energy. Indeed, switching to 100% renewable energy is costly.

Research undergone in the Zero Carbon Emission Stationary

Energy Plan has demonstrated that a pathway to 100% renewable

energy would require a total investment of $370 billion over the

period of 2010-2020, however, it also found the up-front capital

costs would be paid back over time through energy sales, thus the

expense would come with a very rapid economic payback. It is a

strategic investment that would secure Australia’s zero-emission

future and would result in significant savings in future years. With

our carbon pricing, this would ultimately raise total savings to $1,550



Not to mention the 2798 gigatons of


– five times the

safe amount – that would be saved.


We may have the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme and the

Carbon Tax but, shamefully, Australia has only pledged a goal of 20%

renewable energy by 2020 while reports from the Zero Carbon

Australia Stationary Energy Plan have illustrated a target of 100%

renewable energy is affordable and achievable by the same date.


This is not good enough. Why is the government not taking action if

research has proven that it is cost-effective and beneficial to our

economy and world?

In fact, a poll by The Australian Research Group in 2007 found

that 91% of the public support the installation of solar panels, 82%

support wind farms, 78% support energy efficiency.


In 2009, Clean

Energy Council’s poll of 1200 Australians found that 80% believed

the government should give priority to renewables. Similarly, the

Australian Bureau of Statistics reported almost 90% of people took

some kind of action in 2012 to reduce their power bills.




Data from Beyond Zero

Emissions: Zero Carbon

Australia Stationary

Energy Report, 2011


Data from Bill

McKibben’s Do The

Math at, 2013


Data from Beyond Zero

Emissions: Zero Carbon

Australia Stationary

Energy Report, 2011


Data from the

Australian Research

Group: Climate Change,

November 2007


Data from Clean Energy

Council Australia, 2009

The Australian


Must Stop

Fuelling The

Coal Industry

And Start

Investing In

100% Renewable