Where's common sense?
So, David Owen put forward a motion to the council to declare a "climate emergency". To what facts are you basing this on, or are you just listening to a 16-year old's rant that the world will end and we are all going to die in the next few years? Or are you basing this on the so-called successful protest with the 1500 people who turned out on the Civic Green the other week? 1500 hey, four per cent of our population in Warrnambool, wow!! Why not put it to the vote of the other 96 per cent of the people in our city instead of listening to cries of the four per cent, in which 80 per cent of those were kids who were just glad to have the day off school and would not have any clue on the facts, the fix, the costs. This is all just fear mongering at its best. I do hope common sense will prevail here, but hang on, that left our great country years ago.
Barry Fitzgerald, Warrnambool
Much of what Michael Cane said in denying climate change was irrelevant or incomprehensible and can be dismissed on those grounds (The Standard 05/10) His cheap and cynical ridicule of the brilliant Greta Thunberg reflects other similar attacks on her by mainly males of the far right. He selectively uses some material that apparently 97 per cent of our scientists increasingly concerned about climate change haven't considered. Hardly. The leading role of scientists and our young people will eventually see more politicians either getting or seeking alternative employment.
Tony Delaney, Warrnambool
In reply to the letter written by Michael Cane (The Standard, October 5). We were drawn in enough to look at the sources of his facts. This proved a very interesting but depressing exercise. Let us start with the GWPC. It appears that this is the UK's main club for climate change skeptics (probable membership 60 and falling.)
He stresses how well we are doing at the moment. It's wonderful that we are producing more food, living longer and have better disaster warnings but he has missed the point. We are worried about what will happen in the future not congratulating ourselves on today's achievements.
We would suggest he would be better served to go to some more reputable sources. Read The Australian Government's Department of the Environment Report where it states that climate change will impact every part of our life in an adverse way. What is fantastic is that we can do something about it if we act now.
We agree it is terrifying for children but it should not be up to them to force the world to do something about it. It should be up to us, the adults to do it. Shame on us that so many of us have our heads in the sand. Let's get moving and give our children and grandchildren the sort of life we hope for them.
Marilyn Woodward, Daryl Woodward, Jenny Gent, Fay Armstrong, Parents and Grandparents against Climate Change
Reason shouted down
Having been bombarded by a manifesto of demands on issues ranging from climate change/emergency, gender definition, mental health, drought relief, energy resources, school curricula, banking enquiry, universities, et.al., a smorgasbord, fired at us by the media with the rapidity of a machine gun, I feel for our society confronted by so many problems. Many are demanding these issues be addressed but few are providing the solutions. There exists a tirade of accusations where the quiet voice of reason, where the plan for change or improvement plays no part, is shouted down and confusion escalates into fear. It seems to me that when a particular song is not being heard, a new singer is introduced and the message directed at a more receptive audience. Through all generations we have been subjected to a diversity of songs and singers, often to be left disappointed and sadly, many devastated. If the new flag of climate emergency is to be unfurled in our city, I suggest it flies above the residences of those officials who chose to honour it and not expect the general public to pay homage to a decision in which they played no role. I declare a 6.7 per cent increase in my rates an emergency, I'm living under a very expensive rock. The sounds of silence are once more ignored. Do not raise your voice in protest, it could cost you $825.
Brian Kavanagh, Warrnambool
Time and time again we see money go into road maintenance and construction and within a few weeks those repairs have failed and the road that has just been fixed is stuffed again. Good money is thrown after bad on repairs that just don't work. The system is broken but no one is doing anything to fix it. In 2017 the Victorian Auditor General, in the report into management of state controlled roadways, found there is not enough money for not enough funding is allocated to road maintenance to sustain the road network and that VicRoads cannot demonstrate clearly that it is making the best use of its existing maintenance funds. The Auditor General also found there is no strategy for proactive road maintenance, that there is an expensive "worst first" approach, there is no accountability for repairs and no system in place to ensure works being done to a set standard. Essentially, we are chasing our tail when it comes to fixing our roads. Since that report was released, the Andrew's Labor Government has done nothing to address its concerns. Why? What is the point of having an independent auditor if you are not going to listen to them and just continue on a path that is proven not to be working?
The system needs to be overhauled so that rural and regional Victorians can have a guarantee that works done using taxpayer dollars are going to last longer than a few weeks.
Until something changes, we will be continuing chasing our tail and there will be no overall improvements to the condition of our roads.
Roma Britnell, South West Coast MP
Teens provide real solution
Friday morning's tragic crash on the Princes Highway involving an international driver in a hire care that left three people clinging to life is yet another example of this government's negligence in failing to ensure the sufficient driving abilities of tourists on our roads. Daniel Andrews and his road safety experts at the TAC have done little to reduce the rising road toll in Victoria or to solve the international driver issue. International drivers contribute to 21 per cent of crashes in which ambulances are called along the Great Ocean Road, yet the premier suggested my call for proper testing measures to ensure tourists understood our road rules was culturally inappropriate. Georgia McAndrew and Dayne Hibbert are year 11 students at Belmont High School and recipients of the Peoples Choice Award in the Geelong Upstart Challenge Accelerator Program, and have produced a brilliant and innovative solution to the international driver issue, by designing an app called TourSafe. Rather than waving placards in the Treasury Gardens like some of their peers, or engaging in weak political labelling like the Premier, Georgia and Dayne saw a real problem and produced a real solution. TourSafe is an app that would allow tourists to learn about and then test themselves on Australian road rules. This could be an effective measure encouraged by car hire companies or on international flights arriving in Australia, to help tourists navigate international road environments. Tim Smith MP and I recently met with Georgia and Dayne to congratulate them on their smart idea and their worthy award.
Beverley McArthur, Western Victoria Region MP
- Please note: The Standard prefers letters to be less than 250 words. Preference is given to shorter contributions. Letters must include the author's name, address and contact phone number for verification purposes. Letters are published at standard.net.au/comment/your-say/ and in print.