OUTLASTING countless celebrity marriages, the singing careers of virtually all the Voice contestants and even an Australian Prime Minister, the Climate Council today blows out the candles on its second birthday.
The Climate Council was launched two years ago today, after the Climate Commission was abolished during the Abbott Government’s first week in office and more than 16,000 Australians pitched in to Australia’s biggest crowd-funding campaign.
“As swiftly as we were shut down, the Australian public put us back to work,” Professor Tim Flannery said.
“When we started the Climate Council two years ago, the debate on climate change was at its most toxic.
“But over the last two years, we’ve issued more than 42 reports, generating over 14,000 media articles that reached 200 million people and our videos, articles and graphics have also reached over 100 million through social media.
“International action continues to accelerate and renewable energy is getting cheaper by the day as investment surges. The enormity of the challenge cannot be underestimated but the solutions are not only much more apparent than they were two years ago- they’re already happening.
“I genuinely believe that in many decades time, this juncture two years ago, when the Australian community stood up for accurate debate and policies that are informed by science, will be considered a pivotal moment in Australia’s history.
“Now, with the recent change in the Prime Ministership, it feels like we face another crucial juncture, and a huge opportunity: Australia can stay stuck in the past, or we can boldly embrace the renewable energy future we need. In doing so, we can reap the rewards that will come with it for our economy, our community and our climate.”
Since the Climate Council was launched two years ago:
- Investment in renewable energy has surged and is outpacing fossil fuel investment, with more than a million jobs created last year and record wind and solar installations globally.
- International climate action has accelerated with the US and China forging a historic deal to cut carbon emissions and take decisive action on climate change and world leaders signaling an end to the fossil fuel age for the first time, pledging to phase out fossil fuel use by the end of this century.
- The price of coal has collapsed amid growing evidence China has reached peak coal use and growing concern from investors that coal-fired power plants could become stranded assets
- Records continue to tumble with 2015 likely to surpass 2014 as the hottest year on record and six of eight months in 2015 breaking its monthly temperature record.
“The past two years have held unimaginable change but it’s clear that we’re witnessing a historic shift in the way that our society operates and that it’s possible to tackle climate change and build a more resilient, healthier and prosperous Australia than before,” Prof Flannery said.
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