Thursday, August 19, 2010

How green are the parties?

In a comment on a recent post, I was asked "which party [do] you think people should vote for if they really care about environmental issues?"

You can read my response, or better, you can listen to one of Australia's oldest and largest environmental organisations. The Australian Conservation Foundation, a non-profit non-partisan non-government organisation founded in 1966 and with about 40,000 members, has put out a 2010 election scorecard comparing the three major parties across twenty four tests. The ranking may not be a surprise, but the gaps are larger than I expected. You can download the full scorecard (including a discussion of method) here, but the summary table looks like this:

ALP Coalition Greens
Reduce pollution 37% 13% 90%
Clean energy 47% 27% 100%
Sustainable cities 67% 20% 80%
Healthy environment 55% 23% 88%
Overall 50% 20% 89%

Despite claims of some Christians that they all "support greater care of God's environment", the parties are far from equal on this front.

Many readers may also be interested to compare the parties' commitments to international poverty reduction. The Make Poverty History website has published a 2010 election scorecard (or as a pdf). The differences between the parties are again quite significant.

Or if you're concerned about social justice within Australia, UnitingCare has this scorecard (Anglicare's election contribution is here). Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation (ANTaR) have also put together this scorecard comparing the parties on indigenous affairs, and the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre have put out this one.

Of course, these are not the only issues, but they are a few of issues that are (to different degrees) quite likely to come up in the next parliament (and, in the case of Senate elections, the next two Parliaments), and which Christians may find particularly interesting, especially since they are not always adequately covered by the mainstream media.


byron smith said...

The Greens were the only party with a semi-decent climate suggestion.

And they continued to make good suggestions that were quite feasible and could have broken the impasse.

byron smith said...

SMH: Labor's climate enemies within.