Greenhouse day of action
By Will Williams
CANBERRA — Three hundred people rallied outside the ACT Legislative Assembly on November 30 to protest against the Australian government's stance on greenhouse gas emissions.
The crowd heard speakers, including Green MLA Kerrie Tucker and Simon Corbell of the ALP. Both speakers applauded the ACT Liberal government's criticism of the federal government's opposition to binding greenhouse reduction targets, and called for an improvement in Canberra's public transport system.
Resistance activist Amanda Lawrence demanded that Howard agree to legally binding targets for greenhouse gas reduction at the Kyoto climate conference. She explained the impact a failure to reduce emissions will have on Third World countries.
The rally marched to Parliament House, joined by cyclists protesting against Canberra's lack of safe bicycle paths. There the crowd was met by hostile security staff who removed banners and then turned on the lawn sprinklers.
Speakers at Parliament House included Liberal ACT minister Gary Humphries, who reaffirmed the government's commitment to reduce greenhouse emissions in Canberra by 20% by the year 2018 — a far cry from what is needed.
Mark Horseman, from the Australian Conservation Foundation, declared: "We have a government that is acting as a security guard for the profits of big business". Other speakers included Australian Democrat Senator Natasha Stott Despoja and Greens Senator Bob Brown.