By Senator Christine Milne, Leader of the Australian Greens
How do we build an economic system that serves the needs of people and nature, both for today and for tomorrow?
The economy is a tool; a tool we humans invented – like democracy and politics – to help govern our relationships between each other, and between ourselves and the world we live in. If our economic tools are not getting the outcomes we want, making us happy, safe, healthy, better educated and fulfilled and protecting and preparing our country for an increasingly uncertain future in a world on track to be 4 degrees warmer, then it is time our economic tools changed.
The O'Farrell government wants the parliament to hand Treasurer Mike Baird the power to sell off the state's generators while dumping responsibility for future financial losses onto the public purse, according to Greens NSW MP John Kaye ('Taxpayers face huge bill after power sale', Sydney Morning Herald, 9 March, page 2, http://j.mp/yj9KLJ ).
On a day of nationwide rallies by steel workers calling on Tony Abbott to back the Steel Transformation Plan, Greens Senator for NSW Lee Rhiannon says her party's support for the legislation and proposed amendments requiring the government refer to the Green Jobs Illawarra Action plan when allocating the $300 million to the industry was a big step forward for job security in the region.
"The Greens have taken the Greens Jobs Illawarra Action Plan into federal parliament and held it up as a model for similar steel regions suffering economic hardship," Senator Rhiannon said.
"AWU head Paul Howes needs to explain his opposition to the Greens' amendment which will secure a better package for his members than first offered by government.
Greens NSW MP John Kaye offered his party's unqualified support to parents and teachers at this afternoon's 'Two Schools Two Sites' rally at the Ray Maher Field calling on Education Minister Adrian Piccoli to overturn the decision to relocate Gosford Public School onto the grounds of Henry Kendall High School.
Dr Kaye said: "It is appalling that parents and teachers have been driven to protest action by Education Minister Adrian Piccoli's persistent refusal to disclose details about the government's review of the Gosford Public School move.
"Mr Piccoli ignored the community when he proceeded with the relocation without bothering to consult with teachers, parents or local residents.
"The Minister is undermining public education on the Central Coast by failing to provide a quality safe environment for students and allowing for the school to grow with an expanding population.
"Before becoming Minister, Adrian Piccoli promised he would not become another Terry Metherill.
"Within six months of winning office, he has displayed the same callous disregard of the community and the same zeal for closing down schools as his Coalition predecessor.
"Local member Chris Holstein has failed to communicate to the Minister the depth of anger over the O'Farrell government's shameful land grab.
Greens Senator and higher education spokesperson Lee Rhiannon says the NSW Police have overacted to the presence of squatters at Sydney University .
“The NSW Police riot squad along with emergency, fire and other services have rushed to Sydney University to deal with squatters who have been occupying a disused building for the last three months. This is huge over reaction,” Senator Rhiannon said
“These people are legitimately highlighting the housing crisis faced by students and others on low incomes living in Sydney.
Rally against coal seam gas mining: Sunday 18 September 11am Camperdown Park
A new poll by Galaxy Research has revealed widespread opposition to coal seam gas in Australia.
Greens MP Jamie Parker says the nationwide poll provides support to Sydney's inner west residents, who have already voiced strong opposition to coal seam mining.
"Local residents are rightly concerned about coal seam gas. Dart Energy plans to drill in St Peters and the coal seam gas industry has admitted that extraction will inevitably contaminate aquifers. This could affect a number of surrounding suburbs," said Mr Parker.
The poll found 70% wanted coal seam gas mining prohibited in cities and towns. In NSW 74% supported a moratorium on coal seam gas mining.
Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon says a Federal Inquiry into manufacturing, proposed by Greens MP for Melbourne Adam Bandt, would create a springboard from which to boost job growth in the Hunter's manufacturing sector.
Manufacturing inquiry would benefit Hunter: Greens
The Australian Greens are calling for a wide ranging, independent inquiry into manufacturing and jobs. They have rejected Prime Minister Julia Gillard's one day jobs forum on October 6 as a 'talkfest'.
"Recent job losses underline the need for a rigorous inquiry, finding ways to encourage innovation and adaption, identify opportunities in the manufacturing sector as well as threats," Senator Rhiannon said.
Figures obtained by the NSW Greens show that the state government is already losing millions of dollars a year to effectively pay the logging industry to destroy native forests.
Both Labor and the Opposition have voted against a motion put by Australian Greens Senator for NSW Lee Rhiannon calling on them to reject the proposed forth coal terminal (T4) because of its impact on public health in the Hunter.
Shenhua coal mine a make or break test for Strategic Regional Land Use Policy