I am an ordinary Australian who is a wife, mother and grandmother. I joined GetUp because I wanted action that will ensure a greener, sustainable environment for my grandchildren and their children.
Along with thousands of other ordinary Australians, I attended the GetUp rallies and was delighted to see the diversity of people who joined the campaign to push the Australian Government (whichever party is in power) to adopt environmentally responsible policies that would ensure a sustainable future.
In fact, GetUp has had a big effect. John Howard promised to do just that during the 2007 election campaign as did the Labor Prime Minister elect, Kevin Rudd. While there were clear differences, both sides of politics, independents and the Greens all realised the importance of taking action against the adverse affects of man-made climate change.
So it surprises me that the now leader of the Liberal-National coalition and some of his top men are putting their careers on the line to fight against taking action. It surprises me that, given they all supported John Howard’s position in 2007, they refused to be on the Climate Change Committee to decide the best way forward for our country. They could have had a say. Now they say no to everything except their ‘direct approach’.
As a human being, a wife, mum and grandmum I know that consultation and compromise are essential for reaching the best decision. Tony Abbott chose the ‘my way or the highway’ approach as an opposition leader. So he acted like the school-boy bully and refused to play. Then he bellyaches about the result.
It’s time for me and others who want real change to stand up and be counted. I want a cleaner future. I would love to have solar power, to be able to access wind power (we’re in a high wind area where it would work) and have a home that leaves the smallest footprint on the planet. I would love to see more innovative climate change programs available for everyone: big business, small business, farmers, householders, Australians all over getting behind the spirit of this carbon reduction scheme and finding ways to make our world better or at least sustainable.
Australians have been leaders in the world. We were the second country to give women the vote. Do you think there was opposition to that? You bet there was but we did it and reaped the benefits.
Do you think there was opposition to giving women equal pay for equal work? The opponents said it would ruin the economy. Wrong! Because more women were working and being paid properly, the economy roared. Everyone benefited: business, individuals, the community.
Now we have the opponents to sustainable climate policies. The future is clean, green technology. To argue against this and advocate continuing down the old fossil fuel way is simply madness. Early adopters like Australia will benefit. Those who delay will be the losers. We, Australians, leading the way, will be the winners.
BTW, there are many countries in the world well ahead of us. We’re not exactly the innovative leaders we’ve been in the past on big issues.
If you want to join a non-political group that cares about the concerns of Australians across all political boundaries, join GetUp. I’m proud to be a part of this movement for change.
Read more about this issue in the Winter 2011 issue of NSW University UniKen magazine: State of Denial.
If you want to do something positive about providing a cleaner, greener future , join GetUp.
Read more about Action Against Climate Change and the Labor Government’s Carbon Scheme to tax 500 of the biggest polluters in Australia.