The sign on Peregian Beach made by about 1000 people as a call-to-arms statement about climate change.
The sign on Peregian Beach made by about 1000 people as a call-to-arms statement about climate change.

Mr Morrison, a word from your sponsors

IN THE beginning, there is the Word.

You start with mapping out the letters, then you organise 'letter leaders' to rally enough people to shape a letter.

Last Saturday afternoon, about 1000 people gathered on Peregian Beach to send a one-word message to Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Coalition government.

They organised to spell out a nine-letter word: renewable.

The whole idea was borne of a local government meeting last October, seeking ways to send Canberra a message that more needed to be done about tackling climate change, Noosa Council's council's carbon reduction project officer Anne Nolan said.

"Many councils vowed to act, including Noosa,” she said.

Mayor Tony Wellington said while there were many environmental issues to focus on, "there is really only one pressing issue, and that's climate change”.

"We've known about the impacts of climate change for over 40 years, and every year the evidence just gets stronger,” he said.

"In England there is no debate in the conservative ranks. Margaret Thatcher was a supporter of action on climate change. Here in Australia, John Howard went to the 2007 election promising an emissions trading scheme. Yet right now, in this country, we have precious little leadership from our federal parliament on the matter.

"The suggestion that we need coal to provide jobs is just absurd, particularly when you realise that clean energy projects employ many more people than a business-as-usual scenario.

"According to the Climate Council's analysis, if we were to reach 50% renewable energy nationally by the year 2030, an additional 28,000 full time jobs would have been created.”

Renewables have much lower capital costs than gas and coal power generating systems, and they can be built faster and more efficiently, the mayor said.

"There are already many countries and locales across the planet which generate more than 90 per cent of their electricity via renewables,” he said.

"Countries like Denmark, Ireland, Spain and Germany enjoy high levels of renewable energy from solar and wind, without compromising the reliability of their electricity supply.

"California will reach 50 per cent renewable power in just a year's time. Meanwhile, just 15 per cent of Australia's power comes from renewables.

"Noosa Council has adopted a policy position that sets ourselves a target of 2026 to achieve net zero emissions for all Noosa Council operations, facilities and activities.

"Climate change should be the catalyst for altering not only how we live, but how we care for each other and the planet,” he said.