THE Australian Greens have pledged $100 million annually to support drough-affected communities and the nation’s agricultural industry as part of an eight-point plan to tackle a changing climate.
Bendigo’s Greens candidate Robert Holian and Senator for Victoria Janet Rice both spoke about the importance of the plan for farmers in the region.
“When I’m going to local markets in Bendigo, farmers talk about how they are going to adapt to climate change in the coming decades,” Mr Holian said.
The plan will seek to reverse funding cuts to Landcare, which is dedicated to managing environmental issues in local communities.
A national ban on fracking, a new Centre for Sustainable Agriculture and promotion of the domestic carbon farming and farm forestry industries are among the other initiatives announced by the party.
“It is a plan that acknowledges that we are in a climate crisis,” Senator Rice said.
“This is $100 million in grants per year for drought relief. It’s not just a handout, which is what the government does,” she said.
Federal member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters said that the Greens copied a lot of Labor’s work in this space.
“Labor has already announced a significant investment in carbon farming and a policy around soil improvement and land management,” Ms Chesters said.
Mr Holian is excited to attend early voting centres across the electorate, which opened on Monday as he spoke to the media from Strathdale Park this week.
He was focused on his own campaign and wouldn’t be drawn in to discussion about Bendigo’s other candidates, including from minor parties.
“I’m running my own race. That means putting up positive Greens policies and ensuring people have a real choice and are able to vote for policies they believe in,” Mr Holian said.
There are three early voting in the Bendigo electorate, located at 45 Mitchell Street, Bendigo, 113-123 Mackenzie Street West, Golden Square and 25 Lyttleton Street, Castlemaine.