Media Release Group

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Labor forest announcement undermined by Labor preferences

The Australian Greens have revealed that the Labor party is considering preference the pro-logging, shooting and climate change denier party Country Alliance in the Western Victoria Upper House Region.
"In 2006, the Labor party preferenced both the ultra-conservative DLP and Country Alliance ahead of the Greens, handing the DLP a seat with just 2.5 percent of the vote," said Marcus Ward, Australian Greens candidate for Western Victoria.
"They look set to do the same again in Western Victoria, refusing to rule out preferencing the DLP, Country Alliance and Family First in the Upper House."

Duped by Desalination

“Figures just released to parliament revealing that in excess of $570 million will be paid annually to the consortium building the Wonthaggi desalination plant, regardless of how much water it delivers”, said Neil Rankine, Greens candidate for Bass, “show that the State Government was incompetent in ordering such a large plant.

“AquaSure the international consortium building the plant and the banks, Westpac and NAB, that set up the financing on the other hand have clearly secured a great set of contracts for themselves.

“Premier Bracks said the plant would be run constantly at full capacity when he announced it in 2007. They have been back-pedalling ever since. The excessive scale of the desalination plant was confirmed by studies I was involved in more than two years ago and again by DSE studies for the Environmental Effects Statement required for the desal plant.

Greens first rural/regional Victorian seat Western Victoria

Impressive results in the federal election for the Australian Greens suggest Western Victoria could be the first rural/regional seat for the Greens in Victoria.
Marcus Ward is the Australian Greens lead candidate for the state Upper House seat of Western Victoria. Marcus lives near Kyneton with his partner Chris where they operate a wildlife shelter rehabilitating orphaned and injured animals. He's an architect specialising in energy efficient rural housing with over 300 completed projects throughout Victoria.
The Greens received a larger swing than both Labor and Liberal across Western Victoria, achieving over 12.5 percent of the Senate vote.

Let's inject some sense into the debate over marine parks

"What a stir the debate on marine parks is causing and what a storm in a teacup", said Dr Malcolm McKelvie, Greens candidate for McMillan.

"Even our coalition candidates won't find the concept too hard to understand- protect some sites from fishing so the fish populations can breed and thrive and spread out so there are more fish to catch everywhere else for people now as well as their children and grandchildren. It's not difficult nor very complicated- it's another policy that makes good sense and works."

Greens say much more is needed for the Snowy River

Greens candidate for Gippsland Michael Bond has cautiously welcomed the Federal Government water announcements but is concerned that they will only result in minor increases in flows to the Snowy River.

Meeting with members of the Snowy River Alliance in Bairnsdale and Paynesville, Michael said: “The announcement to pay out the Snowy River “debt” will only result in a mere 2% increase to flows for the current water year (2010-11) when the legislated target for June 2009 was 15% below Jindabyne Dam and 21% by 2012.

Labor shown as gutless again on education funding.

"The PM's decision to back down or delay again on the equitable distribution of education funding for public schools is a disgrace. It has been Labor policy for years to address the creeping of funds to non-public schools such that one third of government funds reach public schools that teach two thirds of students" said Dr Malcolm McKelvie, Greens candidate for McMillan.

Carbon failure puts cart before horse in closing hazelwood

Michael Bond Greens candidate for Gippsland , said, “The Greens welcome the Brumby Governments announcement of a staged closure of Hazelwood power station. However it raises questions about what will replace it because previous governments have all failed to set Australia on a sustainable course with regard to Climate Change,”

Labor and Liberal climate policies cost jobs

Australian Greens candidate for Ballarat Belinda Coates says that both Labor and Liberal have simply moved to delay on climate change and it will cost the region jobs.

Rising tides in Port Phillip Bay – is channel deepening to blame?

"There have been growing reports of higher tides, beach erosion, faster currents and an increase in swell (surge from Bass Strait) since the Entrance to Port Phillip Bay was deepened,” Greens MP, Sue Pennicuik said today.

Western Port ecosystem more important than plans to expand Port of Hastings

The Greens have rejected the government's proposal to abolish the Port of Hastings Corporation and incorporate it into the Port of Melbourne Corporation, under the Ports Integration bill in state parliament this week.

Sue Pennicuik, Greens spokesperson for Ports said. "The Greens have grave concerns about the impact of a larger Port of Hastings on the local environment and on Western Port Bay, which is a Ramsar-listed wetland."

Growth Area expansion madness

Local Greens Party candidate slams NEW suburban Growth Area intrusion into what should be Melbourne’s Food Bowl. The threatened land

Neil Rankine, the endorsed Greens Party candidate for Bass, sees the expansion of suburbia into prime, high yield, cropping country, as offensive to local farmers and the community’s ideals for livable suburbs
“The State Government is proposing an expansion of the Growth Area Boundary into an area bounded by Thomson Rd, Cardinia Creek, Ballarto Rd, Manks Rd and the South Gippsland Highway (see map attached). Approximately 40 square kilometers (4000 Hectare) of land is involved in this new expansion to the South East of Melbourne.

Victorian desalination plant may send the state broke!

A forum held at Wonthaggi on Saturday 22nd May heard some shocking revelations about Victoria's desalination plant.

Secrecy surrounding the contracts between the government and the desalination consortium led Kenneth Davidson, a senior journalist at the Age, to question the Victorian Auditor General. Mr Davidson found evidence of further secret contracts and indications of the real cost of the plant. “$900 million a year will eventually come from the pockets of Victorians, to pay for the desalination plant and its water”.

He considers this amount to be unaffordable and could send the state broke within five to ten years.

"Save our Bush" Rally Wed 24 Feb

12-2pm on Parliament House steps
The Rally aims to draw public attention to the destruction of our native bushland by the State Government's "growth-at-any-cost" policy of building freeways -- instead of promoting alternative modes of transport.
The Rally will coincide with a motion to the Legislative Council by the Greens MP, Sue Pennicuik, opposing construction of the Peninsula Link -- which would destroy much of The Pines Flora & Fauna Reserve (220 hectares) near Frankston.

Greens blast family violence "disgrace"

Last night in parliament, Greens MLC Colleen Hartland slammed the government's decision to close the Family Violence Unit (FVU), a vital service in the City of Brimbank.

"Family violence is the leading contributor to death, disability and illness in Victorian women aged 15 to 44.   Brimbank has one of the highest rates of reported family violence incidents in Victoria," said Ms Hartland

Minister's bike punt answer "bizarre" - Hartland

Greens MLC Colleen Hartland has described the government's response in parliament to her question on the Westgate Bike Punt as "bizarre".

"My question* set out the increase in commuter cycling and the success of running the Punt on of Ride To Work Day, and asked him to consider funding a commuter Punt service for a year, as it would be very cost-effective."

Gunns case shows we need anti-slapp laws in Victoria

Victorian Greens justice spokesperson, Sue Pennicuik MLC, today welcomed the news that the final four defendants in the long-running Gunns 20 case can finally get on with their lives.

"More than five years has passed since Gunns issued their terrible writ against the 20 defendants", Ms Pennicuik said. "Now, on the eve of going to trial, Gunns Ltd has pulled the pin and opted to pay out the remaining four defendants, rather than go to trial".

No link between live music and violence

The recent closure of the Tote in Collingwood has generated a lot of public debate about Victoria's liquor licensing regime. Contrary to recent reports, the security requirements for venues with live music were not part of the bill that passed state parliament late last year. The requirement for live music venues to provide security staff is not enshrined in any act of parliament – it is something the government started requiring of licensees long ago.

RVL back flip proves Minister Hulls must intervene to end jumps racing

Greens MP Sue Pennicuik today condemned the additional reprieve given to jumps racing in Victoria by the sport's ruling body.

"I have to say I am not surprised that Racing Victoria Ltd (RVL) has caved in to fierce lobbying from the jumps racing industry and has backtracked on its decision to end jumps racing," said Ms Pennicuik. "I had been expecting it but it is still extremely disappointing."

Greens select candidate for Western Victoria

The Victorian Greens today announced their lead Marcus WardUpper House candidate for Western Victoria for the 2010 Victorian State election will be Marcus Ward. 

“Victorians are crying out for action on climate change, action on water reform and urgent action to help people deal with changes to our local weather patterns.
Yet the old political parties remain paralyzed, unable to imagine a world without coal. I look forward to the coming election year and the opportunity to kick-start the changes that should have begun a decade a go,” said Ward.

Victorian Greens commend Animals Australia campaign

The Victorian Greens support Animals Australia's current "Don’t buy into cruelty" media campaign which highlights the appalling conditions on intensive pig farms in Australia and congratulate 60 Minutes for airing the issue in its broadcast, "The Hidden Truth" last Sunday night.

"Greens around Australia are working with animal rights lawyers and animal protection groups to put a stop to practices that inflict extreme and unnecessary suffering on farm animals," Greens MP Sue Pennicuik said today.

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