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A feed containing all Greenpeace Australia Pacific press release
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    October 17, 2017: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s new energy plan shows he has completely caved in to the extreme demands of the radical climate deniers in his party.

    The PM will today announce a plan to reposition Australia's energy and emissions policy to scrap all renewable energy subsidies, abandon the Clean Energy Target (CET), and mandate the use of energy like coal and gas.

    “Mandating coal and gas while abandoning renewables condemns our children's generation to a future of unchecked global warming,” Greenpeace Climate and Energy Campaigner, Nikola Casule, said.

    “If this policy is adopted by the party room, nobody will take this PM seriously again.”

    Greenpeace is calling on the PM to recognise the impossibility of achieving Australia’s promised national emissions reductions targets under the Paris Agreement under this new plan.

    “We’ve had two sequential years of climate change-driven bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland is in the grip of drought,” Casule said.

    “But while Malcolm Turnbull knows Australia must move to reduce our emissions and combat climate change he is trying to appease the extreme elements in his party so he can keep his tenuous grip on power.   

    “This is a slap in the face to anyone who cares about Australia's future.

    “What’s more, recent reports have shown that renewables make energy cheaper. The best thing to do if you want to bring down prices is get more renewables into the grid.” [1]

    NOTES FOR EDITORS:

    [1] http://www.solarcitizens.org.au/solar_savings

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org


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    October 17, 2017: Victoria’s move to ban single-use bags has left a dangerously out of touch NSW the last state to move on the most prevalent form of plastic pollution.

    Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, today announced the ban saying he would look to move “as quickly as we can” on the issue.  

    “With this move by Premier Andrews we now have NSW left as the odd state out in their failure to act on plastic bag pollution,” Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner, Simon Black, said.

    “NSW Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, is now lagging behind every other state in Australia and even behind the major supermarket chains who have also taken action to ban the bag.”

    In September Queensland and Western Australia joined South Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and the ACT in implementing bans on single-use plastic bags.

    Premier Berejiklian in July said there was no need for NSW to ban single-use plastic bags as major supermarket chains had already done so.

    But analysis done by Greenpeace Australian Pacific showed a failure to ban single use plastics means 1.1 billion bags would continue to be discarded each year in NSW alone.

    “More than 1 billion bags in NSW will not be covered by the voluntary action by supermarkets. That’s billions of bags that Berejiklian is letting end up in our waterways and landfill,” Black said.

    “Letting supermarkets lead the state on environmental issues would be weak even if it were effective, given that it will still not solve the problem the Premier’s inaction is disgraceful.

    “The EPA’s director of waste management, Steve Beaman, was caught on tape talking about a ‘ban on bans’ in NSW [2] and if that’s the case it’s time to end that foolishness immediately.”

    NOTES FOR EDITORS:

    [1] http://bit.ly/2w4zQA9

    [2] http://ab.co/2gMAGNn

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org

     


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    October 17, 2017: A giant container of “Gladys Wrap” bearing the face of NSW Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, has been unveiled as part of the opening day of Sydney’s iconic Sculptures by the Sea.

    The guerilla art installation was created and placed among the other art exhibits by a dozen Greenpeace activists who are protesting the Premier’s refusal to join other states in regulating the use of single-use plastic bags.

    “Our analysis shows that the NSW government can’t continue to make excuses for their inaction on plastic pollution,” Greenpeace activist, Maggie Koussa, said.

    “Every state other than NSW have moved to ban single use plastic bags but Premier Berejiklian continues to do nothing.”

    Premier Berejiklian in July said there was no need for NSW to ban single-use plastic bags as major supermarket chains had already done so.

    But analysis done by Greenpeace Australian Pacific showed a failure to ban single use plastics means 1.1 billion bags would continue to be discarded each year in NSW alone.

    “More than 1 billion bags in NSW will not be covered by the voluntary action by supermarkets. That’s billions of bags that Berejiklian has an environmental responsibility to keep out of our waterways and landfill,” Koussa said.

    “Letting supermarkets lead the state on environmental issues would be weak even if it were effective, given that it will still not solve the problem the Premier’s inaction is disgraceful.

    “Our oceans are already being clogged up with plastic pollution, and the last thing we need is billions of more bags across NSW ending up in these states’ beautiful beaches, waterways and oceans to strangle and suffocate marine life.”

    NOTES FOR EDITORS:

    [1] http://bit.ly/2w4zQA9

    For interviews contact:

    Maggie Koussa

    0452 621 472 / maggie.koussa@gmail.com

     


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    Hobart, 27 October 2017 - Greenpeace has launched a global campaign for an Antarctic Sanctuary, covering 1.8 million square kilometres of ocean, to protect whales, penguins and other wildlife.

    Following a failure to agree strong marine protection in the East Antarctic [1], Greenpeace has called for governments to show “greater vision and ambition” in the coming year and create the largest protected area on Earth: an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary.

    The Antarctic Sanctuary would be five times the size of Germany, in the Weddell Sea, next to the Antarctic peninsula. [2]

    “Over the next 12 months we have an opportunity to make history: to create an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary which would be the largest protected area on Earth’ said Frida Bengtsson, head of Greenpeace’s Antarctic Campaign. “Ocean sanctuaries not only protect incredible wildlife like whales and penguins, but they ensure healthy oceans which soak up carbon dioxide and help us to tackle climate change.”

    The proposal, submitted by the EU and championed by the German Government, will be considered in October 2018 by the governments responsible for management of the Antarctic marine environment (CCAMLR), which have just concluded this year’s proceedings, having failed to agree strong marine protection in the East Antarctic.

    “From great blue whales to vast colonies of Emperor and Adélie penguins, Antarctic wildlife is already under acute pressure from climate change and now industrial fishing vessels are vacuuming up the tiny shrimp-like krill which Antarctic life relies upon. The fishing industry simply can’t be allowed to expand their operations and steal food from threatened penguins and whales. We now have a unique opportunity to make sure that doesn't happen,” said Bengtsson.

    “We have just 12 months to create the largest protected area on Earth. With almost half our planet made up of waters outside of national borders, and an urgent global need for more large ocean sanctuaries, governments now need to show greater vision and ambition to protect what belongs to us all.”

    Alex Rogers, Professor of Conservation Biology, University of Oxford said:  

    “If we’re going to avoid the worst effects of climate change and protect biodiversity we need to safeguard more than 30% of our oceans and the Antarctic is a fantastic place to start. Threats to the Antarctic are increasing, such as climate change and pollution, including from plastics and fishing. Creating large marine reserves can allow these ecosystems to remain in a fully diverse and functional state. Furthermore, the importance of Antarctic ecosystems in sequestering carbon is only now being realised. There is a narrow window of time for governments to work together to protect the oceans so the time for action is now.”

     ENDS

    Notes:

    [1] The East Antarctic Marine Protected Area aims to protect representative areas of open ocean and seabed biodiversity in East Antarctica. It comprises the following areas: MacRobertson, Drygalski and D’Urville Sea-Mertz. The proposal was prepared by the European Union and Australia.

    [2] Greenpeace is campaigning for an Antarctic Sanctuary covering 1.8 million square kilometres in the Weddell Sea. The proposal has been submitted by the EU and backed by the German Government. It will be considered when CCAMLR next convenes, in October 2018.

    The Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) was established by international convention in 1982 with the objective of conserving Antarctic marine life. It consists of 25 members. For further information, see: https://www.ccamlr.org/en

    For a selection of historic Greenpeace images from the Antarctic, see here

    Contacts:

    Luke Massey, Press & Communications Officer, luke.massey@greenpeace.org, +44 (0) 7973 873 155

    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)


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    SYDNEY, November 1, 2017 - Australia is poised to miss its 2030 emissions reduction targets with the United Nations identifying us as one of a number of countries that need to take stronger action to meet its Paris commitments.

    The UN Environment Programme's ‘Emissions Gap 2017’ report overnight found that pledges made by nations at Paris in 2015 are only around one-third of what is required to halt global average temperatures rising two degrees or more above pre-industrial levels.

    Australia has pledged to cut its 2005 emissions by 26-28 per cent by 2030 but the report highlighted the federal government’s own forecasts, which show the nation is set to dramatically miss the target.

    Australia is projected to emit 592 million tonnes of CO2-equivalent a year by 2030, well above the targeted range of 429-440 million tonnes.

    “Coal is at the heart of Australia’s emissions problems yet the Coalition’s hopelessly compromised energy policy does nothing to address this,” Greenpeace campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    “Australia's failure to adopt a policy to phase out coal exports was specifically criticised by the UNEP report and Pacific leaders, including Tuvalu Prime Minister Enele Sopoaga, who said that Australia was stuck in the dark ages with its reliance on fossil fuels.”

    Only yesterday the World Meteorological Organization’s Greenhouse Gas Bulletin revealed that CO2 levels in the atmosphere had reached their highest level last year in 800,000 years.

    Rapidly increasing levels of CO2 and other greenhouse gases can spark unprecedented changes in climate systems, the WMO said.

    With world leaders meeting next week in Bonn, Germany for the annual UN climate negotiations, COP23, it’s clear that a strong and shared vision must emerge if the world is to close the 2030 emissions gap and stem the increasing levels of CO2 levels in our atmosphere.

    “In the space of just two days we have seen how levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) have surged at ‘record-breaking speed’ to new highs in 2016 and how the world’s governments are still not living up to the promises they made in Paris. Time is running out,” Greenpeace International Executive Director Jennifer Morgan said:

    “The sooner we act, the better. This year’s spate of climate-fuelled hurricanes, floods and drought will rapidly worsen if we fail to seize our moment. The obligation for all countries meeting in Bonn and going forward must be to keep fossil fuels in the ground.

    “Paris was just the starting point. Faster, bolder action is needed. Leaders must emerge in Bonn and use the platform to take stronger action and hold others to account if they fail to live up to their obligations. We can still achieve 1.5 degrees Celsius if we all work together.”

    Greenpeace is calling for countries to use the first stocktake of collective climate action (the facilitative dialogue) in 2018 to unveil stronger climate ambition.

    “The message is clear: our climate is changing and governments must ramp up their action. But more than that, we must also start talking about the responsibilities of carbon producers,” Morgan added.

    “Carbon producers have so far avoided taking responsibility, in any form, for greenhouse gas emissions from their products. That must and will change. The world’s carbon producers have a responsibility to contribute to limiting climate change through investment in mitigation, support for adaptation and compensation for climate damages.”

     

    For interviews contact:

    Greenpeace Media Campaigner Martin Zavan

    +61424 295 422

    martin.zavan@greenpeace.org


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    November 3, 2017: Greenpeace Australia Pacific welcomes the Queensland Premier’s pledge to use her veto power to block $1 billion of taxpayers’ money being used to assist in the construction of Adani’s Carmichael coal mine.

    Annastacia Palaszczuk today said she would veto any federal loan by the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) to help fund Adani’s Carmichael coal and rail line.

    “This is a welcome move by Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Labor Party that will be appreciated by the people of Queensland,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    “Tim Nicholls and the LNP need to move quickly to divert this distortive loan from a project that no commercial bank will touch and risks the Great Artesian Basin, farmland and the Great Barrier Reef.

    “A billion dollars has the potential to be much better spent in north Queensland, on projects that could create vast numbers of jobs in tourism, agriculture, renewable energy, education and health services.”

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org

     


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    November 3, 2017: Greenpeace Australia Pacific welcomes the Queensland Premier’s pledge to use her veto power to block $1 billion of taxpayers’ money being used to assist in the construction of Adani’s Carmichael coal mine.

    Annastacia Palaszczuk today said she would veto any federal loan by the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) to help fund Adani’s Carmichael coal and rail line.

    “This is a welcome move by Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Labor Party that will be appreciated by the people of Queensland,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    “Tim Nicholls and the LNP need to move quickly to divert this distortive loan from a project that no commercial bank will touch and risks the Great Artesian Basin, farmland and the Great Barrier Reef.

    “A billion dollars has the potential to be much better spent in north Queensland, on projects that could create vast numbers of jobs in tourism, agriculture, renewable energy, education and health services.”

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org

     


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    Bonn, November 3, 2017 – In a year marked by devastating hurricanes, floods and drought, Greenpeace said real world leaders must stand up at the UN climate talks in Bonn and propel climate action forward or be held accountable for their inaction.

    Two years since the Paris Climate Agreement signalled the intent to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, Greenpeace said leaders meeting in Bonn must now achieve real progress on the Paris Agreement’s implementation guidelines (the rulebook).

    Leaders must also set the groundwork for raising climate ambition and ending the injustice of inaction ahead of the first stocktake of collective efforts in 2018. (1)

    Greenpeace International Executive Director Jennifer Morgan said:

    “We have no time to waste. Our climate is changing, putting people and communities increasingly at threat, from Suva to Washington or anywhere, but we have a window of opportunity to take fast, bold action to deliver true security and justice for every one of us.

    “At this year’s COP, leaders can start fulfilling the promises they made in Paris and signal their intent to seize the opportunity and the obligation of our time by ramping up climate action.”

    Dubbed the Pacific COP because it is being presided over by Fiji, it will be the first time the global community has met since US President Trump announced Washington would withdraw from the Paris agreement. Fiji has called for Bonn to become a visionary summit and a reaffirmation of climate action.

    “Trump’s decision to back out of Paris has backfired spectacularly, sparking a groundswell of support for global climate action. There is no turning back and there will be no renegotiation and that message must be made clear at COP23. We expect new leaders to emerge in Bonn and the eyes of the world will be on the EU, China and others to step up,” Morgan added.

    The continued hypocrisy of Paris signatories is also being exposed as people around the world take matters into their own hands. On November 14, the Norwegian government’s Arctic oil drilling agenda will be challenged in court as part of a global wave of people litigating to hold governments and big polluters to account. (2)

    “Negotiating for global climate action in Bonn while planning to open up the Arctic for oil drilling is simply incompatible and when politicians put oil before people, they need to be held accountable. This is why we are taking Arctic oil to court,” Morgan added.

    In Germany, summit co-host Angela Merkel must also bring substantial climate commitments to the Pacific COP if she is to reclaim her climate-chancellor badge.

    Greenpeace Germany Executive Director Sweelin Heuss said:

    “Coal is still a major part of Germany’s energy mix threatening the nation’s targeted emissions cuts, while CO2 emissions from the transport sector continue to rise despite the promises of cleaner, more efficient cars. What authority does a COP host hold if it fails to deliver on its own promises? Germany must now kick its coal habit and signal the end of the line for the combustion engine.”

     

    Notes:

    1. More information can be found in Greenpeace’s media briefing:

    http://www.greenpeace.org/international/Global/international/briefings/climate/COP23/COP23_mission_briefing.pdf

    2. More information on the court case against the Norwegian government:

    https://www.savethearctic.org/en/peoplevsarcticoil/blog/we-are-going-to-court/

     

    Contacts:

    Tom Baxter, International Communications Officer, Greenpeace East Asia: tom.baxter@greenpeace.org, phone: +86 156 5241 1229 (CH), +49 152 1927 7342 (DE)

    For interviews with Jennifer Morgan, contact Leola Abraham, Communications Manager, Greenpeace International: leola.abraham@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 6 46 16 20 12

    For interviews with Sweelin Heuss, contact Gregor Kessler, Communications, Greenpeace Germany: gregor.kessler@greenpeace.org, phone: +49 151 7270 2918

    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)


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    Bonn, November 6, 2017: Every region of the world has suffered extreme weather events this year with the alarming news 2017 is on track to be the second hottest year ever recorded demonstrating the need for global leaders at COP23 to take urgent action to contain global warming.

    The average global temperature from January to September 2017 was approximately 1.1°C above the pre-industrial era, according to the World Meteorological Organization’s (WMO) provisional Statement on the State of the Climate published today.

    “The WMO report provides yet another impetus for world leaders to live up to their commitments under the Paris climate agreement and phase out fossil fuels to prevent catastrophic climate change,” Pacific Island Represent activist Alisi Nacewa said.

    “Global warming causes more frequent extreme weather events and exacerbates their intensity. It puts lives in the Pacific and all around the world at risk, but there is still a chance to prevent once in a lifetime disasters becoming the new norm if world leaders gathered at Bonn commit to ending the era of fossil fuels.”

    The report was published on the opening day of the UN climate change conference in Bonn, Germany, where leaders from across the world will aim to set the rules for the implementation of the Paris agreement, which aims to contain global warming to 1.5°C.

    2016 is likely to remain the hottest year on record, due to a powerful El Niño with 2017 and 2015 to take second and/or third places respectively. 2013-2017 is set to be the hottest five-year period on record.

    WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said the results were part of a “long term warming trend”.

    “We have witnessed extraordinary weather, including temperatures topping 50 degrees Celsius in Asia, record-breaking hurricanes in rapid succession in the Caribbean and Atlantic reaching as far as Ireland, devastating monsoon flooding affecting many millions of people and a relentless drought in East Africa,” Mr Taalas said

    “Many of these events – and detailed scientific studies will determine exactly how many – bear the tell-tale sign of climate change caused by increased greenhouse gas concentrations from human activities.”

    Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary of UN Framework Convention on Climate Change which is hosting the Bonn conference, said the findings highlight the growing risks to life on Earth if leaders fail to get on track with the aims and ambitions of the Paris Agreement. 

    “There is unprecedented and very welcome momentum among governments, but also cities, states, territories, regions, business and civil society. Bonn 2017 needs to be the launch pad towards the next, higher level of ambition by all nations and all sectors of society as we look to de-risk the future and maximize the opportunities from a fresh, forward-looking and sustainable development path,” Ms Espinosa said.

     

    For interviews contact:

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Media Campaigner Martin Zavan

    +49 1521 8480440

    martin.zavan@greenpeace.org


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    Bonn, November 7, 2017: The Australian government has been awarded the Climate Action Network-International’s (CAN) Fossil of the Day for its support of Adani Group’s plans to build a coal mine larger than the city of Paris and ship its coal out through the bleaching Great Barrier Reef.

    The dubious honour was awarded to the Australian government on the second day of the COP23 climate talks in Bonn, Germany, where world leaders are gathered to advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

    “As bad neighbours go, Australia is the worst! Providing funding and approval for these mines (Adani isn’t the only one!) would put its already vulnerable neighbours at further risk. You should be striving to protect the Pacific Islands, Australia, not destroy them,” CAN said in a statement.

    Pacific islander platform Pacific Island Represent presented the Fossil of the Day award and slammedthe Australian government, which has publically committed to the aims of the Paris Agreement while simultaneously lining up $1 billion of taxpayer money for the Carmichael mine and rail line, as well as lobbying other governments for overseas finance.  

    “For us in the Pacific this is a matter of survival. Australia can’t sign up to the Paris agreement and then give almost $1 billion to Adani to build the world’s biggest coal mine. It is putting short term profits ahead of the future of entire nations,” Pacific Island Represent activist Samu Kuridrani said.

    “The age of fossil fuels is over. Australia must prove it is serious about limiting warming to 1.5 degrees if it wants to reduce the frequency and severity of natural disasters, from strengthening Pacific cyclones and sea level rise to extended bushfire seasons and bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef.”

    Australia is the world’s largest coal exporter and is on track to become the world’s largest LNG exporter. Australia also supports Statoil’s plans to drill for deepwater oil in the Great Australian Bight, another risky venture that will lock in decades of emissions and make achieving the Paris goals much more difficult.   

    The Australian government is well-known for its climate denialism and continued support of coal, gas and oil expansion despite the overwhelming scientific consensus that we must phase out fossil fuels, and has also scrapped renewable energy subsidies and abandoned its Clean Energy Target (CET).

    “Australia’s hypocritical actions are destroying the environment inside its own borders and beyond. The Australian government cannot continue to do this and call itself a friend of the Pacific. These are not the actions of a friend,” Kuridrani said.

     

    Images here

     

    For interviews contact:

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Media Campaigner Martin Zavan

    +49 1521 8480440

    martin.zavan@greenpeace.org

     

    For interviews in Australia contact:

     Greenpeace Australia Pacific Senior Media Campaigner Simon Black

    0418 219 086

    simon.black@greenpeace.org


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    Bonn, November 12, 2017 - Australia picked up a second Fossil of the Day award on day six of COP23 for seeking to twist, water down and delete references to finance from the loss and damage decision text.

    Loss and damage refers to impacts of climate change including slow onset events such as sea level rise, and extreme weather events, such as tropical cyclones, which may both result in loss of lands, livelihoods and in small island states, coastal areas.

    “Australia has long lacked many things – sympathy, support, and solidarity among them – with its Pacific Island neighbors, but these bullying tactics are over the line, even for them,” the Climate Action Network, which presented the award said in a statement.

    Australia’s reported hypocritical behaviour also appears to contradict the comments it made in its opening statement on behalf of the Umbrella Group of non-EU developed countries to current COP President Fiji.

    “We are mindful that this is the first time a Small Island Developing State has held the Presidency and we are committed to providing our full support for your successful Presidency, including to bring the Pacific consciousness to this COP which we know to be an important aspect of your Presidency,” Australia said in its opening statement to the COP plenary.

    “Australia’s domestic policies, such as support for the fossil fuel industry through subsidies, is insult enough to the Pacific. Couple that with blocking financial mechanisms for the highly affected, and you do not have a recipe for friendship,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific Head of Pacific Net Matisse Walkden-Brown said.

    The Pacific Island Climate Action Network (PICAN) condemned Australia’s reported obstruction, saying the region is already experiencing loss and damage from climate change.

    “Support is necessary and deserved from countries who have caused this problem. Developed countries’ fossil fuels is the Pacific's loss and damage. The issue of Loss and Damage finance needs to be advanced not continuously pushed to the next session," PICAN said.

    Australia was awarded the Fossil of the Day along with Canada, the EU and the US.

    Australia, through the Umbrella Group, also argued in 2015 that there be no reference to loss and damage in the Paris Agreement, reportedly driven by fear of being forced to pay compensation for climate damage caused by their emissions.

    On day two of COP23 Australia received the Fossil of the Day for its support of the Adani Group’s plans to build the world’s largest export coal mine.

     

    For interviews contact:

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Media Campaigner Martin Zavan

    +49 1521 8480440

    martin.zavan@greenpeace.org

     

     


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    Bonn, Germany – 13 November 2017 – Developed countries must break a deadlock at the UN climate talks in Bonn and discuss their pre-2020 climate actions, starting with COP host German Chancellor Merkel who can lead the way, Greenpeace said.

    While there has been progress on the Paris rulebook and the design of next year’s stocktake of collective climate action efforts (the Talanoa Dialogue), the issue of pre-2020 climate action has emerged as the most contentious aspect of COP23 in Bonn.

    Greenpeace International Executive Director Jennifer Morgan said:

    “Developing countries are rightfully concerned about pre-2020 climate action and developed countries need to show good faith by giving the issue the space it needs to discuss how to ratchet up our efforts.

    “Emissions need to peak by 2020 at the latest. This means pre-2020 climate action is critical if we’re to limit global warming to the 1.5 degrees. We have a small window of opportunity and the sooner we act, the better.”

    Germany has targeted a 40 percent cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, but will fall far short of its target unless it ends its reliance on coal. Greenpeace is demanding Merkel signal a full coal phase out in the new coalition government agreement.

    “Merkel cannot truly call herself a friend of the Pacific is she fails to meet her commitments at home. The time for climate sweet talk has ended. Merkel must present a plan on how to reach and go beyond the 2020 targets,” Morgan added.

    In a year marked by a spate of destructive hurricanes, drought and floods, climate vulnerable Fiji is presiding over this year’s climate talks in Bonn, placing heightened focus on the threat of rising seas and extreme weather.

    The climate talks also coincide with new figures from the Global Carbon Project revealing CO2 emissions are expected to rise this year by about 2 percent after three years of zero growth due to the slower pace of emissions cuts in the EU and US and (anomalous) higher emissions in China.  (1)

    “We are making progress, but not fast enough. We must do more. Developing countries are right to raise the issue of pre-2020 action. All stakeholders need to pull together,” Morgan said.

    “Bonn is another crucial step in the path and all eyes are on Chancellor Merkel. The US non-state actors have shown the true face of America by their commitment to climate action here in Bonn. Merkel and others, like the EU and China, now need to do the same,” Morgan said.

     

    Notes

    1.     Global Carbon Project's repport on the Global Carbon Budget is available here

     

    Contact

    Tom Baxter, International Communications Officer, Greenpeace East Asia: tom.baxter@greenpeace.org, phone: +49 152 1927 7342 (DE)

    For interviews with Jennifer Morgan, contact Leola Abraham, Communications Manager, Greenpeace International: leola.abraham@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 6 46 16 20 12

    For German media, contact Gregor Kessler, Communications, Greenpeace Germany: gregor.kessler@greenpeace.org, phone: +49 151 7270 2918

    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)

     


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    Oslo, Norway 13 November 2017 – Tomorrow, environmental organisations Greenpeace Nordic and Nature and Youth take on the Norwegian government in court for opening up new areas in the Arctic to oil drilling. They are arguing that drilling for oil violates the Paris Agreement as well as the Norwegian constitution. Winning the case could set a precedent for future climate cases around the world.

    Norway’s Grandparents Climate Campaign has also joined the case, as intervenors against the government and in support of the environmental groups.

    Truls Gulowsen, Head of Greenpeace Norway said:

    “This is a big day for all of us fighting climate change and greedy governments around the world. By allowing new oil drilling in the Arctic the Norwegian government puts homes, health and families everywhere at risk, and should be held accountable. It is clear to us that this new search for oil is in violation of the Paris Agreement and the Norwegian Constitution, and we look forward to raising these arguments in court.”

    In the trial, set for 14-23 November, the plaintiffs will argue that the Norwegian government has violated the right to a healthy and safe environment for future generations granted by the Norwegian Constitution. This will be the first time this right is used in court. Around the world some 90 countries have a Constitutionally protected right to a healthy environment, and this lawsuit can have a ripple effect helping guide other jurisdictions on how to interpret these rights in their legal systems, and inspiring more people to hold their governments to account.

    Ingrid Skjoldvær, Head of Nature and Youth, added:

    “The Norwegian government, like every government, has an obligation to protect people's right to a healthy environment. It is us in the younger generation, and our children, who will feel the worst effects of this oil being burned. This court case is giving us a critical opportunity to protect our futures and, we hope, providing a valuable tool for others to do the same.”

    At the same time as the climate trial starts in Norway, Fiji is hosting the United Nations climate change conference COP 23 in Bonn, and attending the first day of the trial in Oslo are two young Pacific Islanders representatives from Fiji.

    Alisi Nacewa, Pacific Island Represent activist said:

    "We are here in Norway because our home is on the frontline of climate change. Our way of life is being impacted by extreme weather and rising sea levels right now. There is no way the continuation of oil and gas extraction, can deliver a world below 1.5 degrees. No way. No matter how politicians try to spin it. The Norwegian government has signed the Paris Agreement but they continue to drill for oil and supply the world with more fossil fuels. The two are in complete contradiction. It’s time to hold countries accountable for breaking their Paris commitments."

    The Norwegian government will defend their decision to, for the first time in 20 years, open up a new oil drilling area in the Barents Sea, allowing 13 oil companies to start new exploration campaigns in the Arctic. Norwegian state-owned Statoil has already begun their drilling operations in the Arctic this summer.

    The 13 oil companies that have new license blocks in the Barents Sea are: Statoil (Norway), Capricorn, Tullow and Centrica (UK), Chevron and ConocoPhillips (USA), DEA (Germany), Aker BP (Norway), Idemitsu (Japan), Lukoil (Russia), Lundin Petroleum (Sweden), OMV (Austria), PGNiG (Norway/Poland).

    Notes for editors:

    Media briefings and background on the climate lawsuit: http://act.gp/2jkhjix

    Legal writ submitted to Oslo District Court:http://act.gp/2hc0EJQ

    Nature and Youth is a youth organisation with branches all across Norway. They are connected to Young Friends of the Earth Europe, but it is the organisation in Norway that is a plaintiff in the case.

    Photos and video clipreel: http://act.gp/2hviZp6

    Contacts:

    Truls Gulowsen, spokesperson, Greenpeace Norway,  +47 901 07 904, truls.gulowsen@greenpeace.org
    Ingrid Skjoldvær spokesperson, Nature and Youth + 47 977 02 181, ingridsk@nu.no

    Daniel Bengtsson, international communications coordination, Greenpeace Nordic, +46 703 300 95 10, daniel.bengtsson@greenpeace.org

    Poul Bonke Justesen, press officer Greenpeace Nordic, +45 2629 4938, poul.bonke.justesen@greenpeace.org

    For Australian media enquiries call:

    Simon Black, simon.black@greenpeace.org, 0418 219 086


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    November 13, 2017: One of Australia’s Big Four banks has announced that it will review its support for fossil fuels and diversified miners that do not have a strategy to move away from coal.

    The announcement came as part of the bank’s 2017 Sustainability Report, released today, which also promised to increase clean energy financing to $20 billion by 2025.

    “This is an important step by NAB and reflects community concern, but the bank clearly has a very long way to go,” Greenpeace campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    In order to meet their Paris commitments of keeping warming well below two degrees and as close to 1.5 degrees as possible, financial institutions need to rule out new coal investments and phase out fossil fuels by 2030.

    “A proper review based on science and the Paris commitments would lead NAB to this conclusion.”

    The news further isolates the Commonwealth Bank as the only major Australian bank that has no restriction on coal financing and with the highest financed emissions.

    “As many as 14 global banks have ruled out project finance for new thermal coal mines,” Moylan said.

    “And with community members planning to take action as part of Commbank’s AGM on Thursday the message is starting to get through to the major banks - there is no place for high-polluting and deadly coal investments anymore.”

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org

     


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    Amsterdam, 14 November 2017: Today, a climate complaint against ING filed by Greenpeace Netherlands, Oxfam, BankTrack and Milieudefensie for violating OECD guidelines, was accepted by a Dutch representative of the OECD. [1] [2] The Dutch bank will be investigated by the Dutch National Contact Point (NCP) for having no plan to report on and reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions from its financing.

    This is the first time a NCP has accepted a complaint on the basis of a threat to the climate. This could open up a new avenue for holding businesses accountable for their carbon footprint and climate impacts.

    Kim Schoppink, a campaigner with Greenpeace Netherlands, said:

    "No corporation should get away with financing climate destruction. This should serve to accelerate the inevitable transition away from fossil fuels. To be responsible, businesses must report emissions and climate risks, or they too will face investigations and even lawsuits. The time for them to act is now."

    Jonathan Moylan, a campaigner with Greenpeace Australia Pacific, said:

    “This complaint underscores the fact that banks that do not adopt targets to reduce their fossil fuel exposure will be investigated for violating global standards. The Commonwealth Bank not only has no targets, but it has no policies in place to restrict its exposure to coal.”

    Peter Ras, Senior Policy Advisor at Oxfam Novib, said:

    “The decision of the OECD National Contact Point to accept our complaint against ING is great news. We hope this is a wake-up call for the bank and that it will encourage ING to take concrete steps to reduce the climate impact of its financing.”  

    International companies, like ING, must respect the corporate social responsibility expectations of the country in which they are based. The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises is clear about what those expectations are.

    Among other things, the OECD considers it important that companies report on how much they contribute directly and indirectly to greenhouse gas emissions and that companies set targets to reduce emissions. ING does this for the emissions of its own operations, but not for those of the companies and projects it finances, even though these emissions are significant.

    The four organisations sent their complaint to the NCP the 8th of May, 2017. They called on ING to demonstrate its commitment to the OECD Guidelines in relation to the climate impact of its investments.

    ING can do this by publishing details of the greenhouse gas emissions attributable to its investments, as well as setting ambitious, concrete and measurable targets to reduce them. This approach should align ING's climate policy with the aim of limiting global warming to 1.5°C, as agreed by the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015. [3]

    This investigation is part of a growing global wave of legal challenges to businesses failing to act on climate change. This year, Commonwealth Bank was forced to acknowledge climate change as a material risk in its annual report, following a lawsuit brought by two shareholders that was later withdrawn following the Bank’s announcement. [4] Cities in California are also suing the world’s biggest companies for contributing to climate-fueled sea-level rise that will cost billions of dollars. [5] All of these actions are part of a concerted effort to ensure greater transparency of climate risks and a rapid transition away from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

    Notes for the Editor:
    [1]https://www.oxfamnovib.nl/Files/rapporten/2017/OECD%20complaint%20against%20ING%202017.pdf

    [2] https://www.oesorichtlijnen.nl/meldingen/overzicht-meldingen/lopende-meldingen

    [3]http://unfccc.int/files/essential_background/convention/application/pdf/english_paris_agreement.pdf

    [4]https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/sep/21/commonwealth-bank-shareholders-drop-suit-over-non-disclosure-of-climate-risks

    [5]https://www.reuters.com/article/legal-us-usa-oil-climatesuits/california-cities-sue-big-oil-firms-over-climate-change-idUSKCN1BV2QM

    Contacts:

    For Australian media contact:

    Simon Black, senior media campaigner / simon.black@greenpeace.org / 0418 219 086


    Kim Schoppink - Climate & Energy Campaigner - Greenpeace Netherlands -

    +31681410797 - kim.schoppink@greenpeace.org

     

    Peter Ras - Senior Policy Advisor - Oxfam Novib

    +31623300110 - peter.ras@oxfamnovib.nl


    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)

     


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    Oslo, November 14, 2017: Pacific Island Represent activists are in attendance at an historic court case where the Norwegian government is attempting to defend its unsustainable and climate-threatening Arctic drilling operations.

    Greenpeace Nordic and Nature and Youth are suing the Norwegian government for opening up new oil fields for drilling in the Arctic, arguing that this is a violation of the Paris Climate Agreement and the right to a healthy and safe environment for future generations as stated in the Norwegian constitution.

    Norway’s state owned oil company Statoil, has already conducted exploratory drilling in the contested areas.

    “The expansion of fossil fuel extraction directly contradicts the Paris Agreement’s aim of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees,” Pacific Island Represent activist Samu Kuridrani said.

    “The Norwegian government has signed up to the Paris Agreement but any steps they take to reduce emissions by doing things like banning petrol and diesel cars are negated by their plans to expand oil drilling operations in the Arctic.

    “Fossil fuels cause climate change, which for us in the Pacific means more frequent and intense cyclones and rising sea levels that threaten to wipe entire nations off the map. The Norwegian government cannot commit to containing global warming and then go and open up new oil fields.”

    The science that underpins the Paris agreement is clear: at least 80 percent of existing fossil fuel reserves have to stay in the ground. If the world is to achieve the Paris target limiting global warming to 1.5°C, all new fossil fuel developments must be stopped.

    If Statoil follows through on its plans to drill in the Arctic the oil would not hit the market for 10 to 20 years, locking in future emissions.

    Statoil have also recently expanded their operations into other risky oil fields with plans currently in place to drill in the rough, deep waters of the Great Australian Bight.

    “We’ve come all the way from Fiji to bear witness at this trial and show the Norwegian government that its operations have far-reaching consequences. But we didn’t need to travel this far to find an example of Statoil breaking Norway’s Paris commitments and exacerbating climate change in the Pacific, with their rigs eyeing up waters off the southern coastline of Pacific neighbour Australia” Pacific Island Represent activist Alisi Nacewa said.

    “Statoil’s appetite for risky frontier oil knows no bounds. The earth is under assault from Statoil in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. The company is determined to pollute the ocean, destroy marine life and risk workers lives in its own Arctic waters but it acts with equally reckless abandon on the other side of the world in the Great Australian Bight.”

     

    For interviews contact:

    Greenpeace Media Campaigner Martin Zavan

    +61424 295 422

    martin.zavan@greenpeace.org 


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    Bonn, November 15, 2017: Australia has again been shamed on the world stage for its inaction on climate change, taking 57th place out of 60 countries ranked in the 2018 Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) report.

    Australia was named among the “very low-performing countries” in three of the four categories the CCPI ranking is based on – greenhouse gas emissions, energy use and climate policy.

    Australia was also listed among the lowest performing countries in terms of renewable energy.

    “Australia appears to be going backwards,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific Deputy Program Director, Susannah Compton, said.

    “Recent howlers include scrapping subsidies for renewable energy in one of the sunniest countries on earth and propping up the embattled Adani mega-mine with offers of public handouts when no commercial bank will touch the project.

    “Australia’s climate inaction is an anchor dragging down global progress towards limiting warming to 1.5C.  And as the world’s largest coal exporter soon-to-be largest gas exporter, what happens here is of material concern to our Pacific neighbours and the Arctic ice melt.

    “Australia urgently needs to strengthen its 2030 targets on emissions reductions and renewables, and announce credible policy pathways to meet them.”

    The news comes around two weeks after the United Nations Environment Program’s (UNEP) ‘Emissions Gap’ report found that Australia was on track to miss its Paris Agreement commitments by a significant margin.

    Australia has pledged to reduce its emissions by 26-28 percent of 2005 levels by 2030. However, UNEP projects the nation’s emissions will rise to 592 million tons of C02 equivalent annually by 2030, far above the 429-440 MTCO2 level required.  

    Read the full CCPI report here

     

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Senior Media Campaigner

    +61 418 219 086

    simon.black@greenpeace.org


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    November 16, 2017: Greenpeace welcomes the announcement today by the Commonwealth Bank that they would distance itself from coal projects.

    In a statement released to the ASX ahead of the bank’s annual general meeting shareholders were informed that they “should note that our coal funding is comparatively small and has been trending down for some time. We expect that trend to continue over time as we help finance the transition to a low carbon economy”.

    “Commonwealth Bank have today set a new standard for financial investment in Australia,” Greenpeace campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    “By ruling out future investments in coal they have shown they are willing to literally put their money where their mouth is on fossil fuel investment.

    “Westpac, ANZ, and National Australia Bank must immediately follow suit and show the rest of the world Australian financial institutions are serious about combating climate change and protecting coal affected communities.”

    Moylan said the announcement shows Australia was now joining other world economies who are moving away from the most polluting of all fossil fuels.

    “Around the world financial institutions are turning their backs on coal,” Moylan said.

    “But we cannot be complacent and ignore the very real damage every mine and every coal-fired power plant is doing to the environment, the communities that surround them, and the planet.”


    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org


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    Bonn, 17 November 2017 – Greenpeace demanded climate leadership to emerge from the Pacific COP, calling on leaders to listen to the need for urgency and transform their energy and land-use systems.

    The Trump administration failed to stop the global climate talks from moving forward, despite its  announcement to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, but the world is still in urgent need of action.

    The head of Greenpeace’s political delegation Jens Mattias Clausen said:
     
    “Leaders must now go home and do the right thing, prove that they have listened to the voices of the Pacific, with all their hurt and hope, and understand the urgency of our time. Talk is not good enough and we still lack the action we need.

    “We call on France, Germany, China and others to step up and display the leadership they claim to stake. Clinging to coal or nuclear power and parading as climate champions while failing to accelerate the clean energy transition is nothing but bad faith.”

    This year’s COP placed heightened attention on climate impacts and the need for accountability, but failed to deliver the concrete support that a small island COP should have. 
     
    Clausen added:

    “We welcome the focus on enhanced ambition and the inclusion of pre-2020 climate action in the design of next year’s stocktake, the Talanoa Dialogue. This will form part of Fiji’s legacy and it is imperative that the dialogue will not just be a discussion but actually lead to countries ramping up their climate targets. 

    “Bonn still leaves a daunting task of concluding the Paris rulebook next year. Countries need to rediscover the political courage they had in Paris to complete the rulebook on time.”

    A deal to break a deadlock in Bonn over the languishing pre-2020 climate action from developed countries and to anchor it in coming climate talks must now prove pivotal in forging additional ambition.

    Pacific Island Represent activist Samu Kuridrani said:

“The Pacific has been dealing with the devastating impacts of climate change for years so time is a luxury we do not have. While leaders talk, we face the effects. It’s time for leaders to live up to their promises.” 

    Greenpeace USA climate campaigner Naomi Ages said:

    “We have seen the true face of America here, exposing how Trump and his regressive fossil fuel agenda are outnumbered by those who proclaim with one voice, America is still in. It's been abundantly clear here that despite Trump, climate action continues. World leaders must now categorically reject any proposed weakening of America’s commitments and hold the US administration to account if it reneges.”

    Greenpeace Germany Executive Director Sweelin Heuss said:
     
    “This COP saw Germany drastically lose credibility and leadership on climate action. Chancellor Merkel’s disappointing speech failed to align Germany with a coalition of progressive nations stepping away from coal, raising doubts if Germany is committed to the ambition of the Paris agreement. Only by deciding on a coal phase out will the new government be able to reach its climate targets for 2020 and 2030.”

    Greenpeace China Climate Policy Adviser Li Shuo:

    “The Pacific COP has been a way-station in China's aspiration to become a climate leader. The transformation from a developing country to a responsible global power takes time and courage, but climate leadership demands urgency. In 2018, eyes will increasingly turn to China to enhance the country's climate ambition and help conclude the Paris rulebook.”

    Greenpeace Southeast Asia Executive Director Yeb Saño said:

    "The voices from the climate frontlines have spoken in the Pacific COP. But how much have those who are historically most accountable for climate change listened? Those least responsible for climate change are suffering the worst impacts and this great injustice must be addressed. Governments and corporations must urgently change their policies and practices to avert climate-related human rights harms."

    Contact:
    Tom Baxter, International Communications Officer, Greenpeace East Asia: tom.baxter@greenpeace.org, phone: +49 152 1927 7342

    For German media, contact Gregor Kessler, Communications, Greenpeace Germany: gregor.kessler@greenpeace.org, phone: +49 151 7270 2918

    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org, phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)


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    Oslo, Norway 22 November, 2017 – Today is the last day in court where three environmental organisations have taken on the Norwegian government for opening up new areas in the Arctic to oil drilling. The plaintiffs have been arguing that drilling for new oil violates the Norwegian Constitution and contravenes the Paris Agreement. Winning the case could set a precedent for future climate cases around the world. The verdict is expected in 4 to 12 weeks.

    More than half a million people have submitted their names as evidence of the global opposition against Arctic oil drilling. They are asking the Norwegian government to withdraw the new oil licenses in the Arctic. In a crowdsourcing drive to contribute to legal costs, so far 2500 Norwegians have donated funds covering close to half of the legal costs for the plaintiffs.

    Truls Gulowsen, Head of Greenpeace Norway said:

    “The Norwegian Constitution gives the right to a healthy environment. Winning this case -- having new oil licenses in the Arctic ruled invalid -- would keep millions of oil barrels in the ground. During the hearing, I believe we have made it clear that opening up new oil fields will be in violation of both the Norwegian constitution and the Paris Agreement. We have also shown that Norway, in fact, risks losing billions by investing in these oil fields.”

    During the trial, three environmental organisations: GreenpeaceNature and Youth and Grandparents Climate Campaign, have argued that the Norwegian government has violated the right to a healthy and safe environment for future generations, as outlined in the Norwegian Constitution §112. This is the first time this right has been used in the court of law. Around the world, over 90 countries have a constitutionally protected right to a healthy environment, and the world is now waiting to see if the verdict can inspire more people to make their governments responsible to their citizens.

    Ingrid Skjoldvær, Head of Nature and Youth, added:

    "If we lose, the Norwegian state will continue to drill for oil in the Arctic. This will lead to more climate change and an uncertain future for young people today, and those who come after us. Our hope is that the court will both cancel the oil licenses awarded in the 23rd licensing round and ensure that the Norwegian government start to assess the climate change consequences of distributing new oil licenses."

    During the first week of the climate trial in Oslo, the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, the Norwegian Oil Fund and the Norwegian Central bank (Norges Bank) asked the Government for permission to divest more than 35 billion USD from oil and gas to make the government’s wealth less vulnerable”.

    The 13 oil companies that have new license blocks in the Barents Sea, and would be affected by the verdict, are: Statoil (Norway), Capricorn, Tullow and Centrica (UK), Chevron and ConocoPhillips (USA), DEA (Germany), Aker BP (Norway), Idemitsu (Japan), Lukoil (Russia), Lundin Petroleum (Sweden), OMV (Austria), PGNiG (Norway/Poland).

    -- ENDS --

    Photos and video clipreels: http://act.gp/2hviZp6 

    Contacts:

    For Australian media contact:

    Simon Black, senior media campaigner / simon.black@greenpeace.org / 0418 219 086

    For international media contact:

    Truls Gulowsen, spokesperson, Greenpeace Norway,  +47 901 07 904, truls.gulowsen@greenpeace.org

    Ingrid Skjoldvær spokesperson, Nature and Youth + 47 977 02 181, ingridsk@nu.no

    Steinar Høiback, spokesperson, Grandparents Climate Campaign, +47 911 74 848

    Poul Bonke Justesen, press officer Greenpeace Nordic, +45 2629 4938, poul.bonke.justesen@greenpeace.org

    Notes to Editor:

    Media briefings and background on the climate lawsuit: http://act.gp/2jkhjix

    Legal writ submitted to Oslo District Court: http://act.gp/2hc0EJQ
    Nature and Youth is a youth organisation with branches across Norway. They are connected to Young Friends of the Earth Europe. Nature and Youth is a plaintiff in this case.


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    December 1, 2017: Board members of the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) have been targeted by an alliance of not-for-profit groups in an attempt to prevent them from using more than a billion dollars in taxpayers’ money to help fund Adani’s Carmichael coal mine.

    Polling released today by Greenpeace Australia Pacific reveals that 73 per cent of Australians say that mining industry executives shouldn’t be involved in deciding how to spend public money.

    That polling is being placed on video billboards outside the Perth workplaces of NAIF Chair Sharon Warburton and NAIF board member Justin Mannolini, both of whom lead mining company boards despite their positions with the ostensibly independent NAIF.

    Separately, pamphlets will be distributed calling on board members to immediately distance themselves from the Adani project.

    “Public opinion polling has shown again and again that the majority of Australians reject this mine and now we can see that nobody wants mining lackeys deciding on how their money is spent at all,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific Climate and Energy Campaigner, Nikola Casule, said.

    “The message from the Australian people is clear - if you’re a mining lackey you’re compromised, and you have no place in administering public funds.

    “If the NAIF board members have any sense at all they will immediately distance themselves from the terminally toxic Adani mine.”

     Glen Klatovsky, 350.org Australia deputy CEO, said it was a fundamental conflict of interest.

    “How can individuals deeply invested in the mining industry make objective decisions on the use of $1 billion of taxpayer money on a fossil fuel project such as Adani? “ Klatovsky said.

    “No wonder these polling results are so strong.  Australian people are rightly concerned that we are letting mining industry foxes into the taxpayer-funded chicken coop.”

    ReachTel polling: 

    Do you think board members of institutions that decide how to allocate public funds to large mining projects should be independent of the mining industry?

     

    Total

    Female

    Male

    18-34

    35-50

    51-65

    65+

    Yes

    73.1%

    74.0%

    72.2%

    64.2%

    77.3%

    78.3%

    73.9%

    No

    12.1%

    9.6%

    14.7%

    16.9%

    11.2%

    9.5%

    8.9%

    Undecided

    14.8%

    16.4%

    13.1%

    18.9%

    11.4%

    12.2%

    17.1%

     

     

    Total

    Liberal

    The Nationals

    Labor

    Greens

    One Nation

    Australian Conservatives

    Other

    Undecided

    Yes

    73.1%

    63.7%

    82.4%

    79.5%

    89.0%

    74.5%

    54.4%

    75.6%

    64.5%

    No

    12.1%

    18.9%

    11.8%

    7.2%

    3.5%

    17.3%

    24.1%

    6.5%

    10.8%

    Undecided

    14.8%

    17.4%

    5.9%

    13.4%

    7.5%

    8.2%

    21.5%

    17.9%

    24.7%

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org


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    SYDNEY, December 1, 2017 - As a huge marine protected area in the Ross Sea comes into force on World Antarctica Day (Friday 1 December) this year, Greenpeace has announced an ambitious three-month Antarctic expedition.

    Between January and March 2018, the crew aboard Greenpeace’s iconic Arctic Sunrise vessel will undertake groundbreaking scientific research including a world first visit to the bottom of the Weddell Sea, which is currently the subject of an EU proposal for a 1.8 million square kilometre ocean sanctuary.

    “Almost 30 years ago nations came together to preserve Antarctica as a peaceful place for scientific research, free from the scourge of mining. Unfortunately, the treaty doesn’t cover the surrounding ocean where industrial fishing vessels are sucking up the precious krill that underpins the Antarctic food chain,” Greenpeace Australia Pacific Antarctic Campaigner Alix Foster Vander Elst said.

    “The establishment of the Ross Sea marine reserve shows what can be achieved when governments work together to defend our marine environment. And that kind of cooperation is what is need once again to protect iconic species like penguins, whales and seals, who rely on a healthy ocean for their survival.”    

    During its three-month voyage, Greenpeace will document the Antarctic’s unique wildlife to bolster the case for the establishment of an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary, which would be the largest protected area on Earth.

    Greenpeace is taking Antarctic specialists who will conduct scientific research to identify new species and Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems on the seafloor, including rare corals and sponges. This would provide further evidence for the need for comprehensive protection of the region. The crew will also undertake water sampling to identify the presence of any plastic pollution in this remote region.

    The expedition will also see documentation of the unique and iconic Antarctic wildlife which is facing acute pressure from climate change, fishing and pollution. Award-winning photographers and videographers will be on board to document marine life, such as penguin colonies coping with pressures on food supplies, and majestic whales feasting in the Antarctic Ocean after mammoth migrations.

    Head of Greenpeace’s International Antarctic Campaign, Frida Bengtsson, added that ocean sanctuaries “affect us all” and do a lot more than just protecting the marine life that live within them.

    “Healthy oceans take in vast quantities of carbon dioxide and are essential in tackling climate change,” she said.

    “We’re going to do everything we can over the next year to make sure that not only do the governments responsible for Antarctic protection know the world is watching them, but also make sure they do not pass up this historic opportunity to protect this amazing place.”

     

    Notes

    The expedition will run for three months from the start of January to the end of March 2018.

    Further details of the expedition will be released in January.

    See here for a collection of historic Greenpeace images from the Antarctic.

    See here for an image of the Greenpeace ship the Arctic Sunrise.

     

    For interviews

    Martin Zavan

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Media Campaigner

    0424 295 422 / martin.zavan@greenpeace.org

     


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    Manila, 11 December 2017 - The world’s first ever national inquiry into the responsibility of the fossil fuel industry for the human rights impacts resulting from climate change hits an important milestone in the Philippines today - one day after Human Rights Day. Companies, including ExxonMobil, Shell, BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Suncor and Repsol, are being asked to explain their role in making climate change worse.

    The investigating body, the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines, sent Notices in October requesting the companies to attend the 11 December meeting to discuss and agree on how the investigation will be conducted, as well as evidence submission and witnesses (1). The investigation will intensify in 2018 and has the potential to shift global understanding of corporate responsibility for climate change.

    “Many homes were destroyed during typhoon Yolanda and people died - including some I knew,” said Isagani Serrano, president of the Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM), an organisation that provides support in the aftermath of disasters and one of the petitioners. “We hope CEOs of these companies look deep within their hearts and see how their profit harms people and the planet.”

    Filipino typhoon survivors, other communities suffering the impacts of climate change, and civil society organisations, including Greenpeace Southeast Asia (Philippines), petitioned the Commission for the investigation in 2015 (2), two years after super-typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) claimed the lives of more than 6,300 people and affected millions of others who have yet to recover (3).

    “International Human Rights Day should remind these companies why it’s important that they participate in the national inquiry. Extreme weather fuelled by climate change is making life worse for people on the frontlines of climate change,” said Yeb Saño, Executive Director of Greenpeace Southeast Asia, who is also a petitioner in the investigation.

    “Their basic rights to food, water, shelter, health, and even life are under threat. People have rights, states have duties, and companies have responsibilities to respect these rights. No oil, gas, or coal company has a right to pollute the climate, and those that undermine, threaten, and violate human rights must be held accountable.”

    “The national inquiry in the Philippines is an opportunity to set the record straight on climate change and make sure these companies are as committed as society needs them to be to phasing out fossil fuels and ensuring that our future is powered by 100% renewable energy,” said Saño.

    The Philippines national inquiry is one of a wave of people-powered legal actions taking place around the world. Greenpeace Nordic and Nature and Youth in Norway, young people in the US, senior women in Switzerland, a Peruvian farmer in Germany, a law student in New Zealand, and many others, are taking legal action to seek protection from climate change.

    Yesterday was a very important day for all of humanity. 10 December is International Human Rights Day and the start of the one-year lead up to the 70th anniversary of the UN General Assembly’s adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948.

     

    Notes:

    [1] The Climate Change and Human Rights Petition - see section V. Commission on Human Rights’ Notice for companies to attend preliminary conference of parties.

    [2]  Petition Requesting for Investigation of the Responsibility of the Carbon Majors for Human Rights Violations or Threats of Violations Resulting from the Impacts of Climate Change. 9 May 2016.

    [3] The Philippine National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council. 2015. Final Report re Effects of Typhoon "Yolanda" (Haiyan).

    [4] Sections 17-18, Article 13 of the Philippine Constitution. For further details see Petitioners´ Consolidated Reply

    [5] Corporate responses and comments on the petition here.

    Images are available here: http://media.greenpeace.org/collection/27MZIFJXXEQGR


    Media contacts:

    Desiree Llanos Dee, Climate Justice Campaigner, Greenpeace Southeast Asia-Philippines,
    email: desiree.llanosdee@greenpeace.org; +639985959733

    JP Agcaoili, Communications and Digital Manager, Greenpeace Southeast Asia-Philippines, email: jp.agcaoili@greenpeace.org; tel. +639498891334

    Greenpeace International Press Desk, pressdesk.int@greenpeace.org; phone: +31 (0) 20 718 2470 (available 24 hours)


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    December 14, 2017: Australia’s dirtiest industry has been dealt another blow with the second of the “Big Four” banks ruling out funding for new thermal coal mines.

    National Australia Bank today issued their latest risk appetite statement which prohibits the funding of any new thermal coal mines.

    “This is a market-leading position for an Australian bank and is even stronger than the position taken by Commonwealth Bank last month because it is formal policy,” Greenpeace campaigner Jonathan Moylan said.

    “All over the world financial institutions are turning their backs on coal after realising its contribution to climate change and the damage it does to the health of communities and the planet."

    Moylan said the announcement shows Australian banks were now joining other world financial institutions who are moving to abandon the most polluting of all fossil fuels, with ING promising this week to phase out coal within a decade and commiting to stop funding any utility company which relies on coal for more than 5 percent of its energy.

    The World Bank also announced it will “no longer finance upstream oil and gas, after 2019" in an effort to be consistent with the Paris Agreement goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees C.

    “NAB's decision to abandon coal shows Australian banks realise they cannot continue to ignore the very real damage every mine and every coal-fired power plant is doing to the health of the communities that surround them, and the contribution their fossil fuel financing makes to climate change," Moylan said.

    "It’s time for ANZ and Westpac to do the same and rule out investing in new coal projects.”

    For interviews contact:

    Simon Black

    Greenpeace Australia Pacific Senior Media Campaigner

    0418 219 086 / simon.black@greenpeace.org