Yesterday should have been the day the Victorian Budget was handed down.

Instead, it was postponed at the last moment until the 27th of May.

Whatever the state government’s reasons for this delay, we think it’s an opportunity to ensure the budget reflects the climate emergency we are facing.

A record number of Australians are listing climate change as their number one issue this election.

It’s time for a truly progressive vision that protects our climate.

We are calling on Dan Andrews and the Victorian Treasurer to make the next Victorian budget a climate budget.

We recently wrote a letter asking for just that.

You can see it below.

Regards,

Dr Tim Read

Member for Brunswick.

Mr Tim Pallas

Treasurer

By email: [email protected]

12 April 2019

Dear Treasurer,

Make the 2019/20 State Budget a $3 billion climate and environment budget.

The world is facing a climate emergency. Victoria is facing a critical moment in its history with the accelerating collapse of our natural environment, the climate emergency and a waste crisis.  

Whilst the government’s investment in renewable energy is to be commended, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states we need to stop burning coal by 2030 to protect our climate.

The Victorian Greens urge you to make the 2019/20 State Budget a $3 billion climate and environment budget to:

 

  • Stop Victoria burning coal and gas for energy by 2030
  • Protect and restore our natural environment  
  • End the waste crisis

 

At its essence, a climate budget will consider each and every budget measure and government expenditure through the lens of how it is either addressing or contributing to climate change.

The government should take practical measures in the upcoming budget like:

  • Ending funding to new fossil projects such as offshore gas exploration, coal to hydrogen projects, and the gas hub off Western Port. Build new solar and batteries for schools and public housing.  
  • Protect habitat and biodiversity by ending logging of our native forests, creating the Great Forest National Park and Emerald Link. Increase funding to our national parks, create new marine reserves and coastal parks, and restore rivers.
  • Create a circular economy by creating a local recycling industry, ban unnecessary plastics, and introduce a container deposit scheme and organic waste collection.

To help pay for the $3 billion climate and environment budget, we urge you to use the sustainability fund and raise revenue through mechanisms like a levy on the big banks. It is becoming clear that relying on property transfer taxes is unstable so we also propose the use of a rezoning tax or other form of broad-based value capture such as taxing the unearned profit that developers receive when land is rezoned.

We look forward to the government taking action to protect Victoria’s future for coming generations.

Yours sincerely,