The international climate activist organisation - 350.org - has launched a campaign for Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to install solar panels on The Lodge. It has called for leaders of nations to instal solar panels on official residences, as part of global action on climate change on 10/10/10.
Bill McKibben from 350.org said in an email "Those solar panels won't be enough to solve climate change, obviously. But they'll send a strong symbolic message about what the future demand - and maybe our leaders will see how easy it is to start down a greener path. If they hammer in a solar panel, perhaps they'll feel more committed to hammering out some clean energy legislation."
"We're a little worried, of course, that our leaders will use their new solar panels to claim that they're sincere about climate change without passing the legislation and enacting the regulations that really matter--none of us wants to be used for a photo opportunity. Instead, the message we'll all be sending is: you've taken symbolic action, so now get to work on the real thing." said McKibben.
President Mohammed Nasheed of The Maldives has already confirmed he’ll be up on his roof on 10/10/10, installing a solar array, as part of his nation's bold effort to go completely carbon neutral within ten years.
Surely this symbolic action shouldn't be too difficult for Julia Gillard to also implement. Climate Change Minister Penny Wong launched on Friday in Adelaide installation of 300 solar panels on the roof of the Keylink Industrial Estate.
“The rooftop solar panels will provide 20 per cent of the energy requirements of this cutting edge industrial building,” said Senator Penny Wong. The solar panels will generate 70,000 kilowatt hours of energy a year once completed. The $696,000 project is part of the $94 million solar cities initiative. Adelaide is one of the seven solar cities chosen for the initiative. Other cities include Alice Springs, Blacktown, Central Victoria, Moreland, Perth and Townsville.
"This Government has put more solar panels on roofs than any Government in Australian history. We supported more Australians getting solar hot water. We passed legislation through the Australian Senate which will ensure we quadruple, we increase by four times the amount of renewable energy like the sort you see today and we are supporting these sorts of projects on the ground so that good companies can do their bit for the environment." Penny Wong told journalists in Adelaide.
If the Federal Government can fund the $94 million Solar Cities initiative which has installed over 2,700 kilowatts of photovoltaic solar panels to date, it should be easy for our Prime Minister Julia Gillard to install solar panels on The Lodge. A small amount of symbolic action from the Prime Minister provides hope in the Government taking strong action in implementing renewable solutions to climate change and curbing carbon emissions.
"We understand that if you want to deal with climate change, you have to reduce pollution. And our policies will be about reducing pollution. We have to use less energy and we’ve got to use more clean energy and we’ll be focussed on that." said Penny Wong, "We will be focussed on how we ensure this country moves towards a low pollution economy."
So show some leadership Julia, and install solar panels on the Lodge.