Victoria: green jobs campaign launched

Issue 

The following article is based on information from Friends of the Earth Melbourne.

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On February 24, Friends of the Earth (FoE) joined with the Boomerang Alliance to launch its green jobs campaign, with a small but colourful presence outside Parliament House in Melbourne.

This campaign is seeking to put the idea of green or climate jobs at the centre of how all political parties should respond to the climate crisis in the build-up to the Victorian state election on November 26.

According to research by a range of groups, including the ACF, the ACTU and Environment Victoria, the major green industries that can deliver new jobs in Victoria are:

• Rail manufacturing — 6650 new green jobs by 2014;

• Renewable energy — 4000 new jobs this year;

• Recycling — 3100 new green jobs by 2014;

• Solar water heating — 1500 new green jobs by 2020; and

• Energy and water efficiency — 6900 new green jobs over five years.

FoE is calling on the state government to include container deposit legislation in its Green Jobs package, which will be released shortly by Premier John Brumby. It is estimated that adding a 10c deposit to drink containers would create up to 1200 new jobs in Victoria within a year.

FoE campaigner Cam Walker said: "Simple initiatives can deliver big results for a moderate investment. Energy efficiency has a key role to play in creating long term jobs. It is vital that the current political point-scoring going on against the federal environment minister Peter Garrett does not destroy the federal government's home insulation program.

"Certainly we need to crack down on dodgy operators, but new green industries are a unique opportunity to create jobs while also protecting the planet. Great opportunities exist. But governments need to provide both a carrot for the solution, and a stick against the pollution."

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