Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 10 Hansard (Thursday, 20 October 2022) . . Page.. 3477 ..
of the challenges all of us face but also the possibility we can make real differences with some application.
With that, I thank Mr Davis for bringing this motion. I think it has been an important conversation and a chance to reflect on some really important data as well as policy questions. I am very pleased to support the motion and acknowledge and indicate our support for the amendment from the Minister for Health.
MR DAVIS (Brindabella) (4.54): I thank all members for their contributions and their personal reflections on the challenges of the health of our community as we continue to battle the climate crisis. First on Minister Stephen-Smith’s amendment: I thank the minister for moving her amendments to our motion. They demonstrate the work that the Australian government has undertaken in this space and the role of the minister in this work to date and into the future. I accept there are significant benefits to working alongside our state and territory counterparts at a national level to coordinate and consider the impact of climate change on our health across the country.
But I would like to stress that while we are supporting these amendments it is absolutely necessary for the ACT to remain at the forefront of this work. Our role on a national level is not simply about participation. It has been historically—and it is my ambition it will continue to be in the future—about leadership and challenging our state and territory counterparts and indeed the federal government to be bold, ambitious and committed to building safe cities and safe health systems. We are climate leaders in this city when it comes to emissions reduction, and we need to maintain this reputation and ambition across all areas of government. The national strategy provides context, opportunity and—hopefully—some more funding, but we will absolutely need local solutions, both because of our role as climate leaders, but more importantly because the solutions to climate in this city will necessarily be localised to the geographies and capacities of our city. This is important work and I strongly encourage a creative and bold approach that draws on the incredible expertise, creativity and experience we have in this city as the government prepares their response to this motion.
Mr Deputy Speaker, that concludes some of my remarks around the government’s amendments. While I am conscious of the time and had not intended on speaking too much longer, some of the contributions from my colleagues from the opposition insist on rebuttal—in particular that of Mrs Kikkert just recently, whose core health advice on the challenge of climate change and health intersection seemed to be slip-slop-slap, which just seemed overwhelming, mind-boggling. The reason it is mind-boggling Mr Deputy Speaker is it speaks to a broader challenge we are going to have—well the Canberra Liberals most certainly have but we are going to have in the climate change policy conversation going forward. This city has come to expect and has elected governments for more than two decades that have put at their core a response to the climate crisis.
The Canberra Liberals have come into this chamber so far this term attempting quite valiantly to rebrand themselves as a political party that takes seriously the question of the climate crisis. Indeed, the shadow minister for health has even quoted Greta Thunberg in this place. We have heard a commitment from the alternative government