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Issue #1659      October 8, 2014

Climate Action Rally in Perth draws 1,000

On a wet Sunday afternoon in Perth late last month, 1,000 protesters rallied in Perth as part of the Global Day of Climate Action. They came to hear speakers on climate change and send their message to the decision makers’ meeting at the UN Climate Summit in New York.

The rally in Perth was organised by 350.Org and GetUp! as were rallies held in other major cities including Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, Brisbane, Newcastle, Darwin and Melbourne, the latter where close to 20,000 people rallied and marched.

The principle speaker at the Perth rally was paediatrician and health and wellbeing advocate Professor Fiona Stanley who emphasised that while she was not a climate scientist but a health professional, she knew of the effects which burning excessive fossil fuel had on the environment. The pollution from excessive levels of carbon in the atmosphere causes damage to the environment which causes serious health effects especially on the most vulnerable in our society who are the elderly and the very young.

Grass roots environmental campaigner from Mauritius, Zaheer Allam, spoke of the effects which rising sea levels are having on his country and other low lying areas of the world through the encroachment of sea water on agricultural land.

Countries with high levels of carbon emissions said Allam, had a moral imperative to reduce carbon emissions. Australia has the highest per capita rate of carbon use in the world and Western Australia the highest per capita usage of carbon of all Australian states.

Zaheer also added we should be leaving the coal, gas and uranium in the ground and pursuing renewable energy.

Cameron Power, chairman of Sustainable Energy Now addressed the rally calling for a clean energy future which can create more jobs. “We can do it cheaper than the fossil centric grid we have now.” It was possible, added Power, “to have an energy system that protects the environment and the economy.”

The final speaker was Anglican Bishop Tom Wilmot who said that climate change was a moral issue and: “It is a moral imperative to look after creation, or life itself.”

There was also a call to protesters to let their elected representatives know that climate change needs to be on the agenda for the G-20 Summit to be held in Brisbane on November 15-16.

Despite the scorn and ridicule by the clarions of capital about climate change, the day of climate action around the world was a success as they brought more people along and pushed the issue further into the mainstream of social and political discourse.

The Communist Party of Australia recognises the challenge facing the planet on climate change in addition to the global insecurity caused by a runaway capitalist economic crisis threatening to plunge the world into economic and political darkness as well as an environmental crisis.

The CPA calls on people to be active in their communities and workplaces, to call for greater development and use of renewable energy, changes to the way we produce and consume the earths finite resources and increase conservation of energy.

Next article – Grim theatre for war, attack on democratic rights

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