Protecting Victorians from the climate emergency
- We are on the brink of a climate emergency, with a potential future that is five degrees hotter.
- Climate change is already affecting our communities and the environment. Bushfires are happening in winter, droughts are getting worse and extreme weather events are more frequent.
- Climate impacts are location specific, but little is being done to support local communities or the environment.
- Labor and Liberal governments continue to make damaging decisions, and nothing is holding them to account.
The Greens' Plan:
- A Climate Commissioner, for coordinated government information and action on climate change.
- A State of the Climate Report, so the public knows how climate change is affecting our communities and the environment.
- A Climate Budget, to hold Governments to account in addressing the climate emergency.
- A Local Climate Impact Inquiry, to develop local solutions to unavoidable climate change impacts.
- Investment in Carbon Drawdown in Victoria, to do our share in removing dangerous carbon from the atmosphere.
Climate change is already affecting us
We are already feeling the impacts of climate change. Bushfires are happening in winter, droughts are getting worse and extreme weather events are happening more frequently.
The Greens know that we must prepare for these impacts now, to protect our communities and environment for the future.
Labor and the Liberals are failing Victorians
We can't rely on Labor and the Liberals to respond to the climate emergency. They continue to allow big corporations to burn dirty fossil fuels that destroy our climate and environment.
We need greater scrutiny for whoever is in government, so the public can hold them to account and demand strong action on climate change.
A Climate Commissioner
The Greens will create a new Climate Commissioner for Victoria, to lead a new independent Climate Commission.
Like the Auditor General, the Climate Commissioner will scrutinise government action, or inaction, on climate change.
An independent Climate Commission will give climate change increased prominence within government and the cross portfolio perspective that is needed to adequately address the enormous challenges for our state.
State of the Climate Report
The new Climate Commissioner will produce a State of the Climate Report every second year, with the first in 2019. This report will show Victorians how we are being affected by climate change.
The State of the Climate Report will report on positive decisions – like protecting forests to store carbon – and negative decisions – like approving new roads that increase emissions.
This information will allow the public to make informed decisions about how our government is performing in tackling climate change.
The Climate Commissioner will work with the Department of Treasury and Finance to include a new mandatory section in the Victorian Budget, that reports specifically on government spending to tackle climate change and its impacts.
A Climate Budget will hold our government to account financially, to show how serious they really are about protecting us from the worst impacts of climate change.
Local Climate Impact Inquiry
Supporting our communities
The impacts of climate change are often location specific. While many regional towns face greater bushfire threats, our heavily populated city areas become urban heat islands and coastal communities are impacted by rising sea levels. This means communities need local responses to climate change.
The Climate Commissioner will run a Local Climate Impact Inquiry, in partnership with local government, communities and environment groups, to identify localised climate change impacts and ways these can be addressed.
Protecting our environment
Climate change is already damaging our precious natural world. Alpine forests are being destroyed by droughts and unprecedented fires, and our coasts and marine environment are being degraded by warming oceans and changing tidal patterns.
The Inquiry will deliver a comprehensive assessment of these impacts.
The Inquiry will make recommendations to government on funding that should be allocated to protect communities and the environment.
The government will be required to respond to recommendations from the Inquiry, showing all Victorian's how serious the government really is about protecting us all.
Our forests and oceans have together absorbed more than half of carbon pollution over recent decades, but they are under enormous pressure. There’s already too much carbon in the atmosphere and we need to be actively removing it in an environmentally responsible way.
The Climate Commissioner will identify Victorian specific projects to remove carbon from the atmosphere, to reverse the damage that has already been done.
How much will it cost?
The Greens would allocate $20 million over four years to establish and run the new Climate Commissioner. This will form part of the Greens' fully-costed election platform.
Check out our policy document for information about our Climate Commissioner.
Further information about our related energy policies
The Greens’ have a bold set of policies to transition Victoria out of dangerous fossil fuels and to 100% renewable energy. For further information, visit:
- 100% Renewable Victoria – Our plan for publicly owned renewables generation, storage and network upgrades, and to phase out coal by 2030.
- Power Victoria – Our plan for a public energy retailer, to stop price-gouging by corporate energy companies and deliver savings on energy bills.
- Solar for Everyone, Solar for Schools and Solar for Public Housing – Our plans to ensure all Victorians can benefit from clean, renewable solar energy.