Sydney, 13th April 2014: 350.org Australia welcomes the release of the latest IPCC report, to be launched in Berlin today, which shows there is no excuse for funding new coal and gas projects.
The report highlights the need for a drastic transition from carbon polluting fossil fuels to a clean renewable energy system if the world is to remain below the two degree global warming limit agreed by world leaders. To fund the transition, the IPCC said at least USD30 billion per year would need to be divested from dirty energy over the coming decades, while investments in renewable power would need to double.
“The latest IPCC report confirms what we’ve known all along – The answer to climate change is simple: stop funding new fossil fuel projects and invest in renewable energies,” said Blair Palese, CEO of 350.org Australia.
“Now that we have the solution, there is no excuse for governments or investors to be supporting coal and gas expansion.
“We are calling on the Australian government to prove its commitment to avoiding climate change by rejecting the proposed Galilee Basin coal mines and reversing the cuts that have been made to the renewable energy sector” concluded Ms. Palese.
Meanwhile, a group of Pacific Islanders have announced their intention to set sail for Australia and lobby fossil fuel financiers directly, in response to the IPCC report.
Representatives from twelve Pacific Island nations, including Vanuatu, Micronesia, Tonga, Tokelau and Papua New Guinea have started building canoes in preparation for a long journey to Australia where they will meet with fossil fuel financiers to demonstrate the human consequences of investing in coal and gas projects.
“The latest IPCC report shows that there is still a chance to save our homes, but only if Australia and the rest of the world takes ambitious action to switch from dirty fossil fuels to a renewable energy system,” comments Fenton Lutunatabua,350.org Pacific spokesperson.
“Everything we have and are is at threat from climate change. Most terrifying is the threat of losing our Islands to sea level rise,” continued Lutunatabua.
“Already villages are being located – from Papua New Guinea to Fiji. Many of us are coastal peoples, and the sea level rise we have seen in recent decades has been enough to put hundreds of villages around the Pacific Islands on a knife-edge. Unless we stop polluting the atmosphere with greenhouse gasses, and rapidly phase out fossil fuels, then it becomes entire islands that we will lose,” concluded Lutunatabua.
Last week, South African Nobel Prize winner Bishop Desmond Tutu also called for an anti-apartheid style boycott movement against the fossil fuel industry for their contribution to climate change.