Australian Religious Response to Climate Change

(*note: the information here is provided by ARRCC)

Updated April 2024

Letter writing campaign – to the PM and Opposition leader
ARRCC is activating a personalised letter-writing effort to the Leaders of both major parties. It may be helpful to start by finding a few others in your faith community, to spend an hour over a cup of tea each writing your own individually worded letter.
It’s safe to start by assuming that the Prime Minister is genuinely concerned about the climate crisis. The reason that he tends to hold back from taking sufficiently bold action isn’t a lack of caring, but a political assessment that it would be too risky to go further than he already is. Our job is to show him that there is more political room to move than he might think.
It is particularly important to encourage the Prime Minister to co-host the COP31 climate summit at the end of 2026.
It is by no means a done deal that he will put himself behind Australia’s bid to do this. We need him to regard it as an opportunity for Australia to shine rather than a risk to be avoided. Now is the time for this message to get through.
Why write to Peter Dutton?
The ongoing aim of the climate movement is to ensure strong bipartisan support for serious action. This is for two reasons:

  • Labor tends to be cautious about being too far ahead of the Coalition, so intransigence on the Coalition side of politics still drags back Labor’s level of ambition.
  • Even if this doesn’t happen at the next election, at some point the Coalition may win back the government and we don’t want them to undo any good work that has been undertaken.

It’s therefore vitally important for the Coalition to move ground. That said, they have shown no interest in doing so. There have been calls to scrap even their 2050 target. They have pursued an agenda of promoting nuclear energy, in what appears to be an attempt to distract people away from technologies that are available now and are much cheaper (renewables). They have attacked large-scale solar and wind and have attacked fuel efficiency standards for vehicles.

So, what to do? There is very little that can be done if the Coalition wins the next election on this platform. However, if they lose, we need them to understand the extent to which their climate policies were a factor in that. They will need to learn the lesson. That didn’t happen at the last election, despite it being described widely as the Climate Election. However, the conservative side of politics has tended to put that loss down to factors other than their failures around climate action. By pointing out now the extent to which the mainstream has moved on this issue and is prepared to vote on it, the seeds will be planted for conversations after Election Day for this lesson to be learned and to achieve true bipartisan support for climate action.

What to write?
You can find the ARRCC complete guide here.

Let ARRCC know when you’re done
When you have sent your letter(s), please could you let us know by filling out the form at the bottom of this web page?