The pollution from burning fossil fuels for energy is a leading cause of global warming. And the most polluting fossil fuel is coal. But a Coal Free future with clean air and water, renewable energy, and a healthy, vibrant Great Barrier Reef is possible.
The Great Barrier Reef is one of the world’s most treasured natural jewels. But the coal industry is accelerating global warming by mining and burning coal, and is putting the future of the Reef at risk. Warming oceans are currently causing the worst coral bleaching event in history on the Reef.
Scientists tell us we can have either coral or coal, but not both. Yet, the Australian government continues to promote the expansion of the coal industry. A Coal Free world will protect the Great Barrier Reef and keep it alive and thriving for future generations to enjoy.
Fossil fuel companies are changing our climate by burning coal, oil and gas - and coal is the most polluting fossil fuel of them all. February and March 2016 were the hottest months on record. But intensifying heatwaves, bushfires and cyclones driven by climate change don’t have to be the norm.
A Coal Free world with a safe, stable climate, where we minimise natural disasters and their impacts on the most vulnerable, is possible. But it means we need to keep 90% of Australia’s coal in the ground. And all of us need to work together to stop the coal industry from using their influence to stick to business as usual at the expense of the planet.
Mining and burning coal poisons our air and sucks up water that is vital for agricultural and human use. Greenpeace’s 2016 Great Water Grab report found that the world coal industry uses enough water to meet the basic needs of more than 1 billion people.
Globally, air pollution from burning coal kills 200,000 people per year. A Coal Free future will put an end to obsolete, polluting power and replace it with clean, renewable energy and keep our planet healthy for all living things.
It’s no secret that our politicians are in the pocket of the coal industry. Since the last federal election in Australia, the fossil fuel industry has donated $3.7 million to the major political parties. In return, big polluters will receive a whopping $7.7 billion of taxpayers’ money in 2016/17 as subsidies.
If we want a truly representative political system which puts people before the power of unelected corporations, we need to go Coal Free.
All the technology we need to go Coal Free is available today, with renewable energy solutions like solar and wind being deployed on a massive scale. In 2015, around 90% of new electricity generation came from renewable sources, according to the International Energy Agency.
Renewables can provide clean, accessible and affordable energy to all. Greenpeace’s Energy [R]evolution report, a peer-reviewed model produced together with the German Aerospace Centre, lays out how the world can get to a 100% renewable future by 2050. All we need is the will to make it a reality.