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Message from the Chair

Dear Members and Colleagues,

WWDACT and Climate Change
When the ex-PM labelled the National Energy Guarantee a ‘game changer’ back in October 2017, I doubt he envisaged how prescient that prediction was. Our new PM has not previously been a supporter of renewable energy technology and last year called the Queensland government’s renewable energy target ‘a muppet of a proposal’. I fear this attitude does not augur well for long term sustainable energy policy. It would be good if the new government had a ‘quo Vadis’ moment and could adapt the NEG to incorporate a Clean Energy Target as proposed by the Chief Scientist in 2017. I am not holding my breath.
Far from denying that ‘climate change’ is a thing, various federal government websites are filled with information about its impacts. The ACT Government’s ‘act smartwebsite reflects the ACT’s Sustainable Energy Policy and aim of 90% renewables for electricity consumption by 2020.
As women with disabilities we need to be concerned about climate change and sustainable energy policies. It is not just for our children’s sake. Extremes of temperature can directly affect the symptoms of many disabling conditions. Power outages can be life threatening. With less disposable income we are over represented in housing which has a low ER rating, and therefore have to spend more on heating and cooling. We are higher users of public transport, and therefore more exposed to the vagaries of the weather. Flood mitigation structures are likely to put access problems in our way. People with disabilities do not fare well in emergencies due to extreme weather events. Emergency shelters may be inaccessible. The list goes on.
Ironically the federal government report on Current and future impacts of climate change on housing, buildings and infrastructure was tabled earlier this month. It is worth reading.

WWDACT hopes the new PM reads it too.
Sue Salthouse