14 January 2013 – A group of prominent Australian scientists and academics have joined with 40 community and grass roots organisations to take a full page advertisement in The Australian Financial Review to call for debate on coal exports.
The ad, entitled Let’s Talk About Coal, points to the potential for runaway climate change and its link with coal production.
“Even the World Bank has warned that the world is on track to reach four degrees of global warming,” it says.
Following is the full text of the ad:
We, the undersigned, call on Australia to cease the expansion of coal exports from this country and join efforts to prevent global warming running out-of-control and destroying lives and livelihoods here and abroad.
It is now well understood that heatwaves, fires, floods and droughts are expected to become more frequent and more intense in the coming decades as the planet warms. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the Bureau of Meteorology, the CSIRO, and the Prime Minister have all made the link between climate change and extreme weather. Australia is especially vulnerable to the multiple impacts of climate change.
To avoid out-of-control global warming and its consequences, greenhouse gas emissions worldwide must peak and decline by the middle of this decade and Australian coal exports must do the same.
Coal exports are Australia’s biggest contribution to climate change and Australians are suffering its impacts now.
We understand that it is not easy for Australians to talk about the role our coal plays?in driving climate change, but we can no longer maintain our silence. Our coal is a contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions which have worsened extreme weather. People at home and abroad are suffering as a result.
Even the World Bank has warned that the world is on track to reach four degrees of global warming within the next eighty-five years. Australia has committed, along with the rest of the international community, to ensure that does not happen. Our choice is clear: cease expansion of coal exports or wilfully threaten the future of our children.
Professor Corey J. A. Bradshaw, University of Adelaide • Associate Professor Peter Alexander Christoff, University of Melbourne Dr. Richard Denniss, The Australia Institute • Professor Matthew England, University of NSW?Professor Peter Gell, University of Ballarat • Dr Elizabeth Hanna, President Climate and Health Alliance?Professor David Karoly, University of Melbourne • Professor David de Kretser AC, Monash University?Dr. Carmen Lawrence, University of Western Australia • Professor Ian Lowe, President Australian Conservation Foundation Professor Robert Manne, La Trobe University • Bill McKibben, President 350.org • Dr. Guy Pearse, University of Queensland Professor David Shearman, Hon. Secretary Doctors for the Environment • David Ritter, CEO Greenpeace Australia Pacific
With the support of:
350.org • Australian Conservation Foundation • The Australia Institute • Australian Youth Climate Coalition Bimblebox Nature Refuge • Cairns and Far North Environment Centre • Capricorn Conservation Council?Central West Environment Council • Climate Action Monaro • Climate Action Network Australia • Climate and Health Alliance Conservation Council of South Australia • Conservation Council of Western Australia • Doctors for the Environment Environment Victoria • Friends of the Earth Australia • GetUp! • Hunter Community Environment Centre • Lighter Footprints Mackay Conservation Group • Mudgee District Environment Group • National Toxics Network?Nature Conservation Council of NSW • North Queensland Conservation Council • Northern Illawarra Sustainability Alliance Oxfam Australia • Quit Coal • Stop Brisbane Coal Trains • The Wilderness Society