Green’s A Political Force

by Editor

The Green Party in Australia and across the world is becoming more and more of a political force.  At the federal level, they even hold the balance of power.

Source: BRISBANETIMES

The Green's - A Political Force

The rise of the Greens as a significant federal political force has further thrust environmental issues into the spotlight in recent years, along with the increasingly partisan issue of man-made climate change.

In Queensland, the most prominent environmental discussions surround the state’s National Parks and the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef. The Bligh government’s Wild Rivers legislation has also been a source of controversy.

Today we look at Labor, LNP, the Greens and Katter’s Australian Party’s environmental commitments in our ongoing series on the four parties’ election policies.

LABOR:

  • $22 million on expanding walking and running tracks as well as mountain bike trails and other outdoor recreation infrastructure in National Parks.
  • Committed to increasing national park land to 12.9 million hectares by 2020.
  • $12 million toward voluntary buy-out of netting licences and further $10 million each year to fund reef protection officers. 
  • $1 million towards waterway health through combating sediment loads and identifying erosion. 
  • Appoint fifty more wild river rangers by 2015. Declare Watson, Coleman and Olive-Pascoe river basines wild rivers and begin work to declare five more. 
  • A 2,250km long wildlife corridor known as the Border to the Beach Green Belt through the addition of 400,000 hectares of new national park to protected areas stretching from the far west to the south east coast. A $15 million fund would be put towards establishing further protected areas in the belt.  

Environmental issues have become increasingly prominent in recent elections.Photo: Louie Douvis

The rise of the Greens as a significant federal political force has further thrust environmental issues into the spotlight in recent years, along with the increasingly partisan issue of man-made climate change.

In Queensland, the most prominent environmental discussions surround the state’s National Parks and the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef. The Bligh government’s Wild Rivers legislation has also been a source of controversy.

Today we look at Labor, LNP, the Greens and Katter’s Australian Party’s environmental commitments in our ongoing series on the four parties’ election policies.

LABOR:

  • $22 million on expanding walking and running tracks as well as mountain bike trails and other outdoor recreation infrastructure in National Parks.
  • Committed to increasing national park land to 12.9 million hectares by 2020.
  • $12 million toward voluntary buy-out of netting licences and further $10 million each year to fund reef protection officers.
  • $1 million towards waterway health through combating sediment loads and identifying erosion. 
  • Appoint fifty more wild river rangers by 2015. Declare Watson, Coleman and Olive-Pascoe river basines wild rivers and begin work to declare five more. 
  • A 2,250km long wildlife corridor known as the Border to the Beach Green Belt through the addition of 400,000 hectares of new national park to protected areas stretching from the far west to the south east coast. A $15 million fund would be put towards establishing further protected areas in the belt. 

LNP:

  • Conduct an independent scientific peer review of the Fraser Island Dingo Management Strategy. 
  • A $12 million program to provide grants of between $2000 and $100,000 to environmental and community groups to parkate in intiatives such as tree planting and restoring land, community clean ups, waterway cleaning, run-off reduction, water quality improvement, beautification and monitoring stream pollution. 
  • Oppose the federal government’s carbon tax.
  • Remove Labor’s Wild Rivers legislation and deal with environmental protection in a Cape York Bioregion Management Plan. LNP plans to give indigenous locals more say to pursue development. 
  • Employ 30 additional Indigenous Rangers to focus on waterways, national parks and protected species.
  • A $9 million voluntary buy back scheme targeting commercial fishing licences and $1 million towards sustainability measures such as enhanced monitoring of regional fisheries.
  • The LNP are investing Koala protection including $22.5 million in acquiring koala habitat for preservation, $3.2 million on Koala health and $800,000 towards rescue and rehabilitation. This is much less than Labor’s ongoing commitment of $45.5 million.
  • Pledged to make national parks a priority but only specific detail announced is a plan to develop and implement a stream-lined state-wide permit system. 
  • Fast track a revised land use plan for the Scenic Rim to rule out mining and coal seam gas extraction in areas that are ruled to be inappropriate. 
  • Remove exemptions for traditional owners to hunt dugong and sea turtles for non-commercial use under the Animal Care and Protection Act 2001. And roll out in other habitats the permit and licensing system for the Northern Peninsula Area of Cape York. 

Queensland Greens:

The Greens biodiversity policy document can be found here, these are some of the highlights:

  • Expand protected areas of the state, including national parks, to 20 per cent by 2020
  • Extend river rangers model to all state catchments, not just Wild Rivers.
  • Prohibit the mining and exploration of uranium.
  • Cancel the proposed Nathan, Connors River, Urannah and Nullinga dams.
  • Allow the public to nominate rivers for Wild Rivers protection.
  • Prohibit the construction of new dams and desalination plants.
  • Immediately ban shark fishing in the Great Barrier Reed World Heritage Area and phase out shark fishing in fisheries by 2014 until catches can be proven sustainable.
  • Exclude oil and gas exploration and extraction in the Coral Sea.
  • Prohibit logging native rainforest species.

Would you consider that voting Green at the next election is actually a vote for the planet or are you just sick of voting for the bi-partisan system all together?

Write your comment, then login to facebook to post it.

Previous post:

Next post: