Analysis

The right-wing dominated Coalition's win in the May 18 federal election is a major setback for the climate action movement, the union movement and the interests of working people in Australia. We must now urgently take steps to unite and step up the fight to defend the movements for progressive change in this country, writes Jim McIlroy.

The ruling by the NSW Land and Environment Court on February 8 to reject the Rocky Hill coalmine outside Gloucester is being felt beyond its local community and will have implications for human rights as well as climate change policy.

You may remember the joy of spotting a favourite animal or plant at a place you would infrequently visit. When, the next time you visited, they had disappeared, you’d come up with a banal explanation that never included extinction. But now a United Nations report says that unless there is a change in approach, we will lose 1 million species forever.

I will happily take any opportunity to wave a red flag in public. My chance to do so this year was on May 1, the International Workers' Day.

In Newcastle, the Hunter Workers May Day community and union rally was held on May 1 instead of, as has been recent custom, on the closest Sunday. It was part of a renewed campaign by unions that saw more than 100,000 workers march through Melbourne on April 10 to demand a pay rise.

Is such action by unions just an attempt to stir up class conflict — the politics of envy — as conservative politicians would have us believe?

Eating meat is increasingly condemned as an unethical choice that murders sentient beings. But we need to understand that more animals die in plant food production than in abattoirs, writes Elena Garcia.

Whichever major party claims government on May 18, neither can legitimately claim to have a mandate for its dangerously inadequate carbon emission reduction policies, writes Pip Hinman.

On May 11, sensors at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii recorded that the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere had risen above 415 parts per million (ppm). The safe level is 350 ppm.

This is the first time since humans have existed that there has been this much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and it is well beyond the safe limit.

With Election Day in sight, there was a palpable sense of relief at an inner west Sydney early voting booth where I had volunteered over the past few weeks. It feels like a long campaign.

This federal election is taking place at a time when the need for radical social and economic change is palpable: the escalating climate crisis and rampant and growing inequality are two major symptoms of the bankruptcy of capitalism.

The following manifesto was drawn up by rural and city-based activists.

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