June 21, 2016

Devastating impacts of Frydenberg’s climate inaction highlighted as dozens occupy his electorate office ahead of federal election

MELBOURNE, June 21st — Dozens of people have occupied Josh Frydenberg’s electorate office and declared it a climate emergency site in Camberwell today to shine a spotlight on the devastating impacts of his and his Government’s inaction on climate change.

2016 is already the hottest year on record, the Great Barrier Reef is undergoing its worst bleaching event in history, extreme storms are devastating coastal communities and the Arctic is likely to experience its first summer without sea ice. Josh Frydenberg, the Minister for Resources and Energy, has been a strong advocate for the fossil fuel industry, speaking in favour of coal and gas expansion. In Parliament, he has staunchly opposed the carbon price, the mining tax and increases in renewable energy investment.

“As the election nears, the impacts of climate change are being felt like never before.  Unprecedented coral Reef bleaching, extreme storms and intense fires are the tragic consequences of politicians’ like Mr Frydenberg’s attachment to fossil fuels” said local resident and student, Menna McAlpin.

“As a young person in this electorate, I want a safe climate future and to know that my best interests are being looked after by those elected to do so. Mr Frydenberg’s close relationship with the big polluters and his blocking of action to stop the worst impacts of climate change speaks volumes about where his loyalties really lie.”

“By taking dignified and bold action here at Mr Frydenberg’s office in the fortnight before the election we are sending a message to voters everywhere that the people who are killing the Reef and melting the Arctic are the last people who should lead Australia.

“Mr Frydenberg has repeatedly showed himself to be unfit for office. From spruiking the benefits of coal and gas to blocking the price on pollution and saying no to investing in clean energy, he has consistently put the big polluters ahead of the people he was elected to represent,” said 350.org Australia Campaigns Director Charlie Wood.

“When our politicians fail us, it is up to ordinary people to step up. The disruption we are causing here today is nothing compared to the disruption caused by runaway climate change.”

“Peacefully occupying Mr Frydenberg’s office is not radical. What Mr Frydenberg and his party are doing to our communities and our climate is radical. Every Australian should keep that at the forefront of their minds when they vote on July 2” said Ms   Wood.

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