My name is Billy and I am a volunteer with the AYCC in Victoria. I first heard about the AYCC through a friend during a discussion we were having about potential volunteer opportunities. She recommended them highly, and with climate change being something I already had an interest in, I was soon signing my first petitions and then expressed an interest to volunteer.
For 4 years now, the AYCC has been working alongside the community in Port Augusta and our friends in the movement to replace their now closing coal fired power stations with Australia’s first solar thermal tower. Remember when 100 people walked 328km from Port Augusta to Adelaide to back the community’s call for solar? Well, the community needs us to stand up again.
But first, some back story. A few years ago, it became clear to the Port Augusta community that the coal stations that had provided jobs to the town, but also had harmed the community’s health, would close soon.
Following a report by Beyond Zero Emissions that highlighted the potential to create new jobs by building a solar thermal plant in Port Augusta, the community started organising to pressure the State and Federal Governments to invest in a transition for the community.
That was four years ago, but just last week it was announced that the coal station would close by March, making this a difficult time for many in the Port Augusta, and surrounds.
With the impending closure, it’s more important than ever that the SA Government steps up for solar thermal - we have an opportunity right now to get them to do it. The South Australian Government has opened up consultations with the community on its climate change strategy. This is your chance to be part of making Australia's first solar thermal happen, sign on to the AYCC submission today or write your own.
This consultation gives us the opportunity to set the wheels in motion for making solar thermal in Port Augusta happen, and to push SA to be cleaner and fairer. That’s why we’ve put together 8 ways to make SA Cleaner and Fairer that you can sign on to.
We’ll list all the names of people who back our submission on the version we send the government. If enough of us believe in a vision for a cleaner and fairer SA, powered by renewable energy with low carbon jobs for all, we can lead and the government can follow.
This isn’t just about South Australia though. Other state governments are looking for leadership on climate policy with Victoria, NSW and Queensland all looking to update their targets and policies, setting themselves apart from the Federal government. SA could lead the way with 100% renewables, a moratorium on new fossil fuel projects and fair access to clean energy for all.
We need the Australian community behind us on this one - will you sign onto our submission ‘8 ways to make SA Cleaner & Fairer’?
Insiders are telling us the SA Government is looking to the community for leadership right now in the lead up to the Paris climate talks, let’s show them that we want solar thermal for Port Augusta and a cleaner, fairer South Australia.
Coal communities across the country are looking for ways to transform their local economies and support the workers through the transition to a renewable energy economy. Port Augusta can pave the way for folks in the La Trobe and Hunter Valleys to free themselves from coal dust and pollution, by transitioning to a diverse and clean economy.