State Budget a Climate Catastrophe

Greens WA spokesperson on climate Robin Chapple MLC has labeled yesterday’s State Budget a ‘climate catastrophe’ as he examined the reduction in funds allocated to the State’s climate change unit.

“Just days after 25 West Australian Local Governments, representing more than 1 million citizens, signed up to the Local Government Climate Change Declaration, we have been treated to a State budget that has completely sidelined the issue,” Mr Chapple said.

“This budget allocation flies in the face of common sense.

“I am furious about this, on the one hand this Government is building more and more climate sensitive infrastructure, and on the other hand it is refusing to adequately fund the Climate Change Unit charged with researching and implementing climate resilience strategies.

“You only have to compare the whopping $167 million allocated to the Perth Waterfront Project, which is a hugely climate sensitive development, with the Climate Change Unit’s budget of less than $13 million of which over 60% goes into grants.

“A budget of less than $6 million for a unit of 20 staff members, employed to deliver best practice climate change management across the state, is a travesty,” Mr Chapple said.

“If you examine the budget closely you see the Government throwing money at the most polluting industries including mining, gas production and energy generation.

“At the same time it continues to whittle away the public services capable of monitoring, assessing and reducing the emissions from these industries. Can we not see the irony here?

“We are treated in this budget to a Future Fund, into which we are channeling $1 billion, yet we can’t find adequate funds to look after our environment. If we can’t do that, all the Future Funds in the world won’t make a bit of difference.” Mr Chapple said.

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