Carbon price forum to launch next climate summit

March 9, 2012

A public forum “Beyond the Carbon Price” will take place at NSW Parliament House on April 27 to open the fourth Climate Action Summit, to be held at the University of Western Sydney over April 27-29.

A diverse panel of speakers will engage with the question of how Australia should tackle climate change now that the carbon price has been adopted.

Confirmed speakers are Australian Council of Trade Unions president Ged Kearney, Greens Senator Christine Milne, the Socialist Alliance's Simon Butler and the Australia Institute's Richard Denniss. Jenny McAllister, national president of the ALP, has also been invited to speak.

Phil Bradley, a member of Parramatta Climate Action Network and one of the organisers of the forum, told Green Left Weekly: “The forum is being held in Parliament House to set a political context to the debate surrounding climate change.

“It will discuss what's needed above and beyond the carbon price in future to prevent the acceleration of climate change, including a chance for the speakers to express their view on complementary measures such as publicly owned renewables like big solar.”

The summit will be an opportunity for climate groups, social justice groups and interested individuals to come together and hear from speakers, learn more about climate science, take part in workshops and meet other climate activists.

Over two days, there will be workshops, feature sessions and skills workshops that will look at the many aspects of climate change. A feature session will be “The Future of Renewables”, with ecologist Ted Trainer, NSW Greens MLC John Kaye, academic Mark Diesendorf and Beyond Zero Emissions' Adam Lucas.

The campaign to stop coal seam gas expansion will also be discussed. The panel of speakers will include Lucas, along with Lock the Gate Alliance president Drew Hutton and Stop CSG Illawarra activist Jess Moore.

Moore told Green Left Weekly that coal seam gas is a serious threat to the environment and an issue that is closely related to the climate movement.

“The contamination of water and farm land, leaking methane, health impacts and carved-up landscapes show the need for an immediate moratorium on all CSG projects and a royal commission into the full impacts of the industry.

“But to win these changes the campaign will have to grow in the face of governments who put industry profits ahead of people and the environment.”

Comedian Rod Quantock, known for his climate themed show “Bugger the Polar Bears, This is Serious”, will perform at a dinner on April 28.

[To see the full program or to register visit the Climate Summit website.]

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