Arron Wood

Sustainable Business and Education Leader

10 reasons why acting on climate change is still good for us even if it turns out that it doesn’t exist

 1. Forcing businesses to operate more efficiently and reduce waste means our industry can compete better with leading countries such as Germany which despite having less sunlight than Australia currently has over 3 times as much solar.

2. Reducing pollution to our atmosphere has health benefits especially for our kids where asthma rates have increased in recent years and studies have shown kids living near busy roads have higher rates of asthma.

3. Alternative energy is big business.  Globally it is shaping up to be a trillion dollar industry as noted by the international energy agency. Surely we want Australia to be a leader in the new economy? And one thing we have more of than coal is sunshine.  What an amazing export opportunity as research continues into turning sunlight into liquid fuel that could be transported around the world in retrofitted LNG tankers.

4. Reducing our reliance on cars, especially in the CBD, and switching to public transport has the potential to reduce pedestrian and cycling deaths.  Not to mention less deaths from car accidents. Reducing overall congestion is simply great for amenity in our cities.

5. Riding a bike or walking can help reduce obesity and improve overall fitness.  Australia is the fattest nation in the world.

6. Reducing our reliance on oil is good for national security especially where Australia is at the whim of oil countries and the designated supply at any one time.

7. Any form of a price on carbon (either tax or emissions trading) has to include funding for low income earners to adjust.  The previously proposed emissions trading scheme would’ve meant big compensation to low and middle income earners ($10 billion) for rising electricity costs – costs will rise regardless of a price on carbon as cheap extraction of coal dries up. Close to 90% of people would’ve been better off after the compensation package.

8. Switching to home grown vegetables or farmers markets not only reduces transport emissions it is usually much better for us nutritionally, supports local producers and if you grow it yourself can be lots of fun and great education for your children.

9. Putting a cap on emissions supports the growth of new businesses such as solar energy which has the potential to offset jobs lost in the fossil fuel industry.  The creation of green jobs is real. According to CSIRO economic modelling, 2.7 million new jobs will be created in Australia by 2025 if we set course to become carbon neutral by 2050.

10. Cooling our cities through roof top gardens, public transport, green spaces and sustainable building design is also good for business.  Studies have shown green buildings reduce absenteeism by up to 15%.  Many of us have heard of sick building syndrome and green design principles avoid many of these pitfalls.

AND there are so many more reasons to act even if you don't 'believe' in climate change.  Would love to hear your ideas!!