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Greens Leader’s statement on the Canberra convoy

"Some might call the predicted thousands of trucks descending on Canberra ending up as hundreds (ABC, 21/8/11) a ‘flop', but these Australians have every right to a peaceful presence on the parliamentary lawns," Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.

"It seems like the prime qualification to be there is to be angry about something - these are Abbott's angry people," Senator Brown said.

"But it seems their views on some issues are fairly shorted sighted, very ‘me-now'."

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Peak oil warning signs as IEA and US DoE release strategic reserves

In a further clear warning about peak oil, the International Energy Agency and US Department of Energy have agreed to release 60 million barrels of oil from strategic reserves in order to dampen immediate oil price crises.

Meanwhile, although the Senate last night passed the bill reforming the Fringe Benefits Tax Concession for motor vehicles, a reform driven over many years by the Greens, Australia continues to subsidise oil for transport to the tune of billions of dollars a year.

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Treasury Secretary

Economics Committee Thursday 2 June 2011

Senator LUDLAM: I want to ask-I do not know whether it has been canvassed very much this morning-about the tax forum coming up in October. If that has not been addressed-

Senator Wong: No, it has not while I have been here. But it might have been done in revenue, when I was not here.

Dr Parkinson: That would have been the revenue group last night.

Senator Wong: I am sure that the secretary can assist as much as he can.

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Road Rage: Federal transport budget has Australia on route for oil shock


The Federal Budget's failure to address years of under-investment in public transport infrastructure has left the country extremely vulnerable to rising oil prices, the Australian Greens warned today.


In Senate Budget Estimates committee hearings this week, Greens spokesperson for transport Senator Scott Ludlam confirmed that once again, Commonwealth infrastructure funds were pouring into urban road building while public transport funding lagged far behind.


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Federal budget’s ‘quarry vision’ for Western Australia

The Federal Budget locks in a Canberra-centric view of Western Australia as the nation's quarry, regardless of the consequences for Western Australians, Greens senators for Western Australia said today.

"There is no serious attempt to address the growing gap in our two-speed economy," said Senator Rachel Siewert. "The budget seems primarily fixated with accelerating the mining boom, with no regard to the consequences for housing affordability, environmental and heritage protection or the damage being done to other sectors of the economy."

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Fringe Benefits Tax reform would be a $1 billion victory for common sense

Reports in this morning's media suggest that the Greens' long campaign to remove the incentive to drive more in the fringe benefits tax concession will finally be included in next week's federal budget.

Treasury costings, undertaken at the request of the Greens, show almost $1 billion in revenue would be restored over the forward estimates if the Australian Greens' proposal to introduce a flat rate fringe benefits tax concession for company cars, regardless of kilometres travelled, is adopted.

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IEA's peak oil warning a message to Wayne Swan: scrap oil subsidies in May Budget

The International Energy Agency's latest warning that the age of cheap, easily accessible oil is over is yet another reason for Wayne Swan to remove the fringe benefits tax concession that encourages people to drive more in the upcoming Budget, the Australian Greens said today.

"In a tight budget where the government is looking to make big cuts, the expensive and perverse subsidies that encourage the use of oil should be top of the list to be scrapped," Australian Greens Acting Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said.

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More excuses on peak oil - now it is time to act

It is well past time for the Australian government to start planning for peak oil, instead of making excuses for voting down motions, the Australian Greens said today.

"It is not good enough for the government to say that it is going to have a report on liquid fuel security by 2012 as an excuse for voting down this motion," said Australian Greens Deputy Leader, Senator Christine Milne.

"In 2006, the Senate made a number of recommendations, including for a national strategy to address peak oil and neither the govt nor the coalition have done anything.

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Peak Oil and Transport


Senator LUDLAM-It did help to clarify. With your regional development hat on, then, we had a really good session this morning with Major Cities Unit and spoke about resilience and planning for high oil prices and transport and so on in an urban context. Is anybody in your area doing any thinking about those issues from a regional perspective where the issues are quite different?

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