Flannery Leads Not for Profit Climate Council
24 September 2013 at 9:59 am
Sacked Climate Commissioners, including former Climate Commission chief, Tim Flannery, have re-emerged to support a new Not for Profit, independent organisation called the Climate Council to deliver public information on the changing climate.
The establishment of the new organisation comes after the Abbott Government last week shutdown the Climate Commission – part of a widespread abolishment of Gillard and Rudd Government climate change initiatives including the Price on Carbon.
The Climate Commission was established by former Prime Minister Julia Gillard's Government in 2011, under the leadership of Professor Flannery (scientist, explorer and conservationist, and winner of Australian of the Year in 2007), to provide independent information on the science of climate change, international action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the economics of a carbon price.
Prof Flannery was reported to have said in The Age that the decision to create the Climate Council was spurred by “a groundswell of support” from across the country.
"We've developed a real reputation for independence and authority in this area, and we just want to continue with that job," he said, in The Age.
The new Council says it has already received seed funding but is seeking cash from the public to be “founding friends”.
So far the Climate Council has received about $35,000 from more than 1000 individual donors.
Former Climate Commissioner and former BP Australasia President Gerry Hueston at a media conference today emphasised the need for the Council to rely on small donations to remain independent and said they would not take big money “with strings attached to it”.
Prof Flannery said the Council was still at the “very early stages of development” and no budgets had been set but was confident they could run the Council on a more limited budget than the $5.4 million over four years that the Climate Commission was run on.
The first report the Council will be releasing will be a companion report to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessment report, to be issued later this week, that will pick up the “big ticket items” and make it accessible to the public.
According to its website, all former Climate Commissioners are volunteering their time to set up the Council.
Also on board are Australia’s leading experts in emergency services, climate science, health and defence.
“They know that climate change has real implications now for our health, our security, our food, and for extreme weather,” the website states.
“They value the information we provide and they want us to continue, and to continue working with us.”
The Council plans to provide independent reports – starting with the international climate science update – and communication materials such as videos, infographics, fact sheets and other resources.
They also plan to run speeches, community forums and briefings.
“Information is the currency of democracy, and Australians deserve to have independent information on the state of our climate,” the website states.
“Similarly, emergency services, health professionals, local government and journalists need accurate information about a changing climate.”
For more information visit http://www.climatecouncil.org.au/.