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civic action « Previous | |Next »
May 6, 2009

The green argument is that governments in countries such as Australia should be far more radical in their response to climate change. The core reality, it is stated, is that the limited government action in reducing green house emissions is proving to be inadequate to the scale of the problem. The inference is that the action is so limited that it represents of wilful neglect.

If the political reality is one of the Rudd Government standing firmly behind the coal industry and the heavy energy polluters at all costs, then there could be an emerging that civil action could well force the government to act. Is there a new social movement concerned to stop climate change emerging? Is there a potential for non-violent direct action on the climate issue to damage its reputation?

It is pretty clear that governments alone won't achieve a climate change agreement. It requires pressure from people in civil society to counter the Government's slack of courage to resist the business groups' begging bowl and resistance to action to limit greenhouse emissions.

I doubt that, Peter Garrett, the Minister of the Environment, will make a speech that calls on civil society to take action onvlclimate change, to put prressure on the Rudd Government to stand up to the heavy polluters.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 7:10 AM | | Comments (2)


Civic action itself seems to be in a strange place at the moment. Since the Seattle protests pretty much all civic action involving bodies has been reframed as violence and participants as mad, unless they're grey haired and dancing about half naked, in which case they're dudded pensioners.

But the violence meme is possibly losing ground with reports of police violence and intimidation (APEC for example).

Petitions are routinely ignorned unless they target a particular seat, which they're starting to do, and donor funded ad campaigns are becoming more common.

What kind of civic action would be required, and who could organise it on the local and global scales you'd need to force the climate change issue at all levels of government?