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Environment, Medical Health Aged Care

SENATORS FAIL YOUTH ON DUTY OF CARE BILL

Climate and Health Alliance 2 mins read

Climate and Health Alliance Board member Dr Catherine Pendrey said she is deeply disappointed the Bill before Parliament seeking Intergenerational equity for youth has been rejected by a Senate committee.

 

The Senate’s Environment and Communications Legislation Committee has recommended the Climate Change Amendment (Duty of Care and Intergenerational Climate Equity) Bill 2023 is not legislated despite compelling evidence from expert paediatricians and general practitioners, frontline workers such as firefighters, academics, lawyers and First Nations individuals as well as children in support of the Bill in February 2024.

 

The bill proposed that decision-makers consider the impact of decisions that could harm the climate or health and well being of current and future children in Australia.

 

It stated that decision makers could not give the go ahead to the exploration or extraction of coal, oil or natural gas – if the likely greenhouse gases emissions posed a material risk of harm to children. 

 

“It’s fundamental that we consider the health of current and future generations of children, in decisions to approve new fossil fuel projects,” Dr Pendrey said.

 

The Duty of Care Bill built on the case Sharma v Minister for the Environment, a legal challenge by brave Australian children who argued that all young Australians are owed a duty to take reasonable care to protect them from climate change harm.


Dr Pendrey said she
called on the government to fulfil their commitment to intergenerational equity. 

 

“Australia has a duty of care to future generations, not to leave them with a catastrophic legacy but instead a nation that leads the way in renewable energy and sustainable development,” she said.

 

“The ongoing failure to continue to expend polluting fossil fuels, and ignore the Government's duty of care to our children is jeopardising their current and future wellbeing.”

 

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Contact details:

For further comment please contact Dr Pendrey on mobile: 0401 395 919 OR Michelle Isles, CEO on 0402 062 071

 

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