How Important is Climate Change to Australian Voters?

How Important is Climate Change to Australian Voters?

A new Australian poll has found climate change is a big issue in voters’ minds, as Labor hastily reassesses its climate policy before election day. A very high number – 78% – said climate change would influence their vote. Meanwhile, the Australian Conservation Foundation has welcomed policy commitments from the Australian Greens to cut pollution, make clean energy cheaper and protect our oceans.

Cathy Alexander for AAP (5 August 2010):

A poll has found climate change is a big issue in voters’ minds, as Labor hastily reassesses its climate policy before election day.

The poll of 2200 people, commissioned by conservation groups, found 78 per cent said climate change would influence their vote.

Almost half said the issue would be a strong influence, with younger people, and those learning towards Labor or the Greens, most concerned.

Climate change has proved difficult for Labor after it dropped its promise to start emissions trading earlier this year.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s climate policy is centred on a citizens’ assembly to look into a carbon price, which has been widely criticised and appears to have contributed to a slide in the polls.

Labor is understood to have reassessed its climate policy in recent days and may make further announcements.

Possibilities include incentives to discourage land clearing, and spending more money on climate schemes.

The Auspoll was taken in late July and was commissioned by the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) and WWF.

ACF executive director Don Henry said the poll showed the public was not happy that both parties were “missing on climate”.

“Ms Gillard and Mr Abbott aren’t taking climate change seriously but Australian voters think they should be,” Mr Henry said in reference to Opposition Leader Tony Abbott.

The Liberals plan to spend money on storing carbon in soils and trees if they win the election.

Source: www.news.theage.com.au

ACF Announcement( 1 August 2010):

The Australian Conservation Foundation has welcomed policy commitments from the Australian Greens today to cut pollution, make clean energy cheaper and protect our oceans.

“ACF strongly supports the environmentally and economically responsible commitment by the Greens to protect special areas in our oceans,” said ACF Executive Director, Don Henry.

“The Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster is a stark reminder of what can happen when fragile marine environments are left unprotected. Setting up a large network of marine sanctuaries will reduce the risks of devastating oil spills and protect our unique marine life for the benefit of all Australians.

“The Greens policy of cutting energy consumption by 20 per cent by 2020 would reduce power bills for households and businesses and is very welcome.

“Australians want our leaders to make clean energy cheaper and help us save energy.

“ACF welcomes the commitments by the Greens for increased investment in urban light rail systems and to investigate the feasibility of high speed rail to connect our largest cities. We urge the major parties to follow this lead by committing to re-balance the national transport budget – with two thirds being invested in cleaner, faster and affordable public transport systems – by the end of the next term of government.

ACF’s independent election scorecard places the Greens on 81 points out of 100 while Labor and the Coalition are lagging behind on 33 and 15 respectively.

“Australians want our leaders to reduce pollution and protect our environment and at the moment, the Greens are leading on ACF’s scorecard with Labor doing poorly, and the Coalition very poorly.” 

Source: www.acfonline.org.au

2 Responses to “How Important is Climate Change to Australian Voters?”

  1. Time is slipping by and the time for talk has pasted we need action across all sectors from industry to homes to farming. No single policy will be the answer we need an over all approach in all sectors and the goverement needs to stand up and make the right policy for all, not just the big end of town and this will not be easy.
    The time for short term gain is over I just can’t see why people don’t realise what is at stake here, right now not in 2012 or 2020. Don’t leave it for some else to do the hard yards, help by being proactive now.

  2. I think climate change is very important the Australian voters but due to at of smoke and mirrors on climate change issues some people still don’t want to listen, they think it will all just cycle and fix itself.

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