A climate action and carbon price rally was held in Treasury Gardens, Melbourne, Australia on Saturday 12 March 2011. About 10,000 people attended the rally to support the need to price carbon pollution as one measure for taking action on climate change.
The rally was organised by several environment groups, including Getup and Environment Victoria, to show public support for pricing the pollution that is contributing to climate change, as announced by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
The Multi-Party Climate Change Committee, Australia recently announced an intention to price carbon pollution. The committee is chaired by Julia Gillard and has ten members including two Greens, one independent MP and four experts from outside Parliament is helping shape the federal government’s climate change policy. Climate Change Minister Greg Combet and Greens Senator Christine Milne are co-deputy chairs.
The Liberal/National opposition has refused to participate with the committee. Opposition Leader Tony Abbott called for a “peoples revolt against the carbon tax”. His call, supported and promoted by some talkback radio hosts, resulted in 200 people protesting at Julia Gillard’s Werribee offices on the same day as the rally, including Liberal Senators Liberal Scott Ryan and Mitch Fifield.
Speakers at the Rally
Letters in The Age 14 March 2011
Young people lead charge on climate
RELATIVELY little media attention has been given to the spontaneous and inspiring community protest by more than 8000 citizens of Melbourne held on Saturday outside the Prime Minister’s office in Treasury Place. This was in support of her imposition of a carbon tax and called for urgent action on climate change, including renewal energy initiatives.
The rally was intended to show Tony Abbott’s followers – the climate deniers and protesters over the carbon tax – who held a rally of about 200 outside Julia Gillard’s electorate office that the majority of the population want action.
What was so inspiring was the extraordinary number of young people who attended the climate action rally and their compelling warnings that time is running out and that their futures are in jeopardy if solutions to arresting climate change are not found soon.
What was also commendable about the rally was that there were no negative statements or vitriol issued about Abbott and his sympathisers, unlike among those trumpeting their anti-carbon tax/anti-Gillard message at their parochial rally in Werribee.Lewis Prichard, Hawthorn
Equal air time
PROFESSOR Ross Garnaut’s claim of biased media reporting received further support on the weekend (“The science is good, the media bad, the situation worse”, 11/3). After a major show of support for climate action on Saturday by about 8000 people next to the Treasury Gardens in Melbourne, the television news on the ABC, Channel Seven and Channel Nine gave as much, if not more, time to an anti-climate rally of 200 people in Werribee.Helen Lewers, Napoleons
Stop naïve mantra
IF Tony Abbott does not want the government to launch a public information program then he should stop his three-word campaign and get down to a genuine discussion about how to tackle carbon pollution.
With the help of his friendly shock jocks he is forcing the government to take steps to counter his naive mantra.
It would have been far better if the Liberals had joined the multiparty committee on climate change, but the real hypocrites are the moderate Liberals such as Joe Hockey and Malcolm Turnbull, who really would have liked to be involved. But they don’t have the guts to go against Abbott, more’s the pity. The country’s future is more important than scoring petty points.
Simon Jenkins, Fawkner
- Multi-Party Climate Change Committee – Think Change
- PM unveils climate change committee
- Climate Action Now Rally Melbourne 12th March, Russell Coker