W #Australia’s Goldfields could be a #renewable #energy world leader under Greens plan – @SenatorLudlam #auspo l

WA’s Goldfields could be a renewable energy world leader under Greens plan

Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam. 23 July 2013.

Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam is in Kalgoorlie today convening a meeting of business and industry leaders to plan the Goldfields’ renewable energy future.

Senator Ludlam organised the meeting with leading American solar energy company SolarReserve, the Kalgoorlie-Boulder Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the local Chamber of Minerals and Energy, and other interested parties.

“Earlier this month the Australian Greens launched the Connecting Clean Energy plan to create special zones to help communities become world leaders in renewable energy, boosting regional jobs and investment while also delivering clean power and putting downward pressure on electricity prices. It is a perfect fit for the Goldfields,” said Senator Ludlam.

“The community and business sector in the Goldfields are showing they are ready to take the leadership on solar energy. Research shows the Goldfields has the best resource in this State, and it has the connector line going back to Perth. We had a great response from locals when we came to Kalgoorlie in February and it’s very important we keep up the momentum.

“The Greens ‘Energy 2029’ report shows how Western Australia’s power needs can be met by 100% renewable energy by 2029. In the Connecting Clean Energy plan, we propose a national task force to identify and create the new Renewable Energy Zones to help remove investment and infrastructure barriers.

“Large scale renewable energy projects such as solar thermal plants that can deliver electricity 24/7 will deliver the economies of scale necessary to bring down costs. Recent modelling by Sinclair Knight Merz showed that customers in Australia are on average likely to have a price reduction over the period to 2020 as a result of the Large Scale Renewable Energy Target,” said Senator Ludlam.

The Greens’ Connecting Clean Energy plan would allocate $2 billion to a new Connecting Clean Energy Task Group in the Department of Energy.

Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

Connecting Clean Energy: http://greensmps.org.au/sites/default/files/connecting_clean_energy.pdf

Solar Goldfields: http://www.greenswa.net.au/sites/default/files/pdfs/solargoldfieldsleaflet.pdf

SolarReserve: http://www.solarreserve.com/

Energy 2029: http://www.greenswa.net.au/sites/default/files/pdfs/GREENS_EnergyReport_Web.pdf

#auatralia Govt buries evidence of data retention plan

Cover-up: Government buries evidence of data retention plan

Australian Greens communications spokesperson Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam. 19 July 2013.

The Federal Government has refused to turn over any documents regarding its plans for a data retention scheme, rejecting in entirety a Freedom of Information request from Greens Senator Scott Ludlam.

Senator Ludlam requested “letters, emails, file notes, records of phone conversations or meetings, memos or reports about the drafting of legislation or regulations on data retention between the Attorney General’s Department and the Office of Parliamentary Counsel”. It was denied in full this afternoon.

Senator Ludlam said the rejection was the latest incident in a pattern of secrecy.

“This is the worst of a series of obfuscations, denials and outright falsehoods the Government has issued on data retention. On July 5 the Government admitted it had given false answers to a Senate Estimates hearing when asked if any legislation had been drafted for a data retention scheme, and now this.

“Today and on July 5, the Government timed its move for late on a Friday afternoon – which seems calibrated to minimise exposure.

“The Government has also misrepresented the extent to which it consulted with the telecommunications industry on the data retention proposal.

“The Government argues that every document covered by the FOI request is subject to legal privilege.

“Enough is a enough – the Australian people have a right to know the extent to which their Government has pursued a scheme for universal round-the-clock monitoring of our communications.”

The July 5th admission: http://greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/government-admits-it-gave-false-answers-data-retention-plans

Media contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

Gray shows folly of making ex-mining boss a Minister backs nuclear power – again v @SenatorLudlam

Gray shows folly of making ex-mining boss a Minister by backing nuclear power – again

Australian Greens spokesperson on nuclear issues – Senator Scott Ludlam. 17 July 2013.

Resources and energy Minister Gary Gray has again advocated nuclear power and uranium mining, showing his loyalty to the mining industry is distorting his judgement, the Greens warned today.

Senator Scott Ludlam said “An economists report has found the proposed first uranium mine for Western Australia – Toro’s Wiluna project – could only scrape a profit if the taxpayers foot the bill for the closure and clean-up of the site. The uranium sector is terminal, and it seems Gary Gray needs to be dragged kicking and screaming to the funeral”.

“At today’s uranium conference Minister Gray praised the Ranger mine’s output without mentioning its long and sorry history of accidents and spills.

“The deliberate myopia was particularly bad when the Minister mentioned the Fukushima Daiichi ‘incident’ and the fall in the world uranium price, ignoring the fact the uranium price had been disintegrating for four years prior to Fukushima, from a record high of almost $140 a pound to around $65 a pound. Minister Gray also neglected the fact Australian uranium was in all four reactors at Fukushima.

“Minister Gray’s claim that there is a significant role for uranium to play in addressing climate change is pure fantasy. In Europe 150 nuclear power stations are ear-marked for closure as countries such as Germany, Spain and Switzerland lead the way with huge and growing renewable energy sectors.

“Labor and the Coalition are in lock-step supporting the dangerous, dirty and obsolete nuclear power sector. Only the Greens are standing up for the clean energy and sustainable jobs the renewable energy sector will deliver.”

Media contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

Ranger’s record – http://greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/ranger%E2%80%99s-time

Toro’s doomed Wiluna project – http://greensmps.org.au/sites/default/files/ecolarge_may_2013_wiluna_uranium_final.pdf

W #Australia Housing crisis is creating a poverty trap – time for #TransformingPerth @senatorludlam

Housing crisis is creating a poverty trap – new report

Australian Greens housing spokesperson Senator for WA Scott Ludlam, spokesperson for families and community services Senator for WA Rachel Siewert. 17 July 2013.

A new report shows the housing crisis is making it harder for jobseekers to find work, the Greens said today.

Greens housing spokesperson Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam said the report released today by Australians for Affordable Housing made clear that the lack of affordable housing in Australia is entrenching disadvantage.

“Unless the affordable housing crisis is tackled as an urgent national priority, it will continue to trap Australians in poverty. Not only do high rents make it harder to afford the training or education that would boost the chance of getting a job, they are forcing people to live further and further away from areas with good employment prospects.

“The report found it is particularly expensive to live near areas with jobs suitable for someone re-entering the workforce, making the situation dire for jobseekers and single parents trying to get off Newstart.”

Senator Ludlam said urban planning reform would deliver much more affordable housing close to centres of economic activity.

“Our plan – Transforming Perth – shows how we can deliver as many as 250,000 new homes within the Perth metro area – in areas close to jobs and public services. And our Convert To Rent initiative would see the thousands of empty properties in the city converted into renovated low-cost rentals. These are the kinds of initiatives all parties and levels of governments should be embracing to help Australians seeking work,” said Senator Ludlam.

Greens families and community services spokesperson Senator for Western Australia Rachel Siewert said the report was one of many that showed “people on Newstart are facing numerous barriers to finding work that the system isn’t helping them overcome”.

"A $50 per week increase to Newstart is important for helping people afford the important day to day expenses they face like rent, food and utilities. The Greens plan to increase Newstart by $50 per week and provide a supplement of $40 per week for single parents will help people deal with the cost of living.

"The old parties are ignoring the plight of people on Newstart and seem to think punishing people is the best way to get them into work. This serves only to keep people in poverty and making it harder for them to be able to afford appropriate accommodation,” said Senator Siewert.

Transforming Perth – http://greenswa.net.au/sites/default/files/transformingperth.pdf

Convert To Rent – http://www.greens.org.au/sites/greens.org.au/files/Convert_to_rent.pdf

Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

#wapol @SenatorLudlam keeps pressure on to uncover Barnett’s secret rail business

Greens move to uncover Barnett’s secret rail business

Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam. 12 July 2013.

Greens Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam has moved to reveal details of Colin Barnett’s rail plans today through a set of Federal Freedom of Information requests after the Premier blocked attempts to uncover relevant documents for the second time.

“In February I moved in the Senate for documents regarding the Barnett Government’s applications for Federal light rail funding to be made public, only to be told the Premier had demanded they be kept confidential. Today it has been revealed the Premier has also rejected a Freedom of Information request for correspondence regarding his government’s alleged rail plans for Perth, using the novel smokescreen that because his plans are party-political we have no right to know about it,” said Senator Ludlam.

"WA taxpayers will be disgusted at this abuse of Freedom of Information practices, against a backdrop of stressed and overloaded transport networks.

“Because there is Federal funding on the table, I am making a series of Freedom of Information requests nationally to establish if there is a national paper trail. In the meantime I commend The West Australian newspaper for pursuing this issue and not giving up.

“The need for accountability on plans for Perth’s rail is now more pressing than ever given Tony Abbott’s disastrous policy of cancelling urban rail funding if elected. We need to know how the State Government intends to pay for these projects, given their Federal colleagues seem oddly intent on grinding our city to a halt.”

Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

The Barnett Government blocked Senator Ludlam’s move to make rail documents public in February: www.greensmps.org.au/content/media-releases/federal-labor-liberals-keep-western-australians-dark-light-rail

please share, this is important to all of us -> #australia “#Telstra must reveal all on secret deal with #FBI” – @SenatorLudlam #auspol

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Telstra must reveal all on secret deal with FBI

Australian Greens communications spokesperson – Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam. 12 July 2013.

The Greens have called on Telstra to immediately disclose details of a secret deal, revealed by Crikey today, which was struck 12 years ago to allow the FBI and US Department of Justice to monitor calls and data traffic via the company’s undersea cables.

“Telstra, at the time majority owned and controlled by the Howard Government, struck a deal to allow 24/7 surveillance of calls going in and out of the United States, including calls made by Australians. The cables in question are operated by Telstra subsidiary Reach, which controls more than 40 major telecommunications cables in the region, including cables in and out of China and Australia,” said Greens communications spokesperson Senator Scott Ludlam.

“While the current Australian Government recently pushed then abandoned a two-year mandatory data retention scheme, for more than a decade this secret deal with the United States compelled Telstra, Reach and PCCW to store all customer billing data for two years.

“The deal also compelled Telstra, Reach and PCWW to provide any stored communications and comply with preservation requests; to provide any stored meta-data, billing data or subscriber information about US customers; to ignore any foreign privacy laws that might lead to mandatory destruction of stored data; and to refuse information requests from other countries without permission from the United States.

“This secret deal also allowed FBI and US Department of Justice officials to conduct inspection visits of Telstra and Reach offices and infrastructure.

“This is an extraordinary breach of trust, invasion of privacy, and erosion of Australia’s sovereignty,” said Senator Ludlam.

Contact: Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302

The agreement is available at this link: http://media.crikey.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/US-NSAs-Telstra.pdf

Greens: Reflecting on 50 years of land rights activism since the tabling of Bark Petitions #Indigenous #idlenomore

Greens: Reflecting on 50 years of land rights activism since the tabling of Bark Petitions

Australian Greens spokesperson on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues – Senator for Western Australia Rachel Siewert. 10 July 2013.

Reflecting on 50 years of land rights activism since the tabling of Bark Petitions, the Australian Greens look forward to the next phase of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples Constitutional recognition.

This year’s NAIDOC Week theme, ‘We value the vision: Yirrkala Bark Petitions 1963’, not only recognises the land rights campaign of the Yolungu people and but also emphasises the importance of the ongoing campaign to build support for Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

"As we reflect on this first recognition, we are also looking ahead to the future referendum on recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in our Constitution,” said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"It is fantastic to see that the Journey to Recognition has arrived in Alice Springs and receiving such support on their journey.

"The Greens are committed to seeing our founding document recognise our nation’s First Peoples.

"I encourage everyone to visit Recognise.org.au and help build momentum towards a yes vote when we get to the referendum," Senator Siewert concluded.

Media Contacts:

Giovanni Torre – 0417 174 302