Greens Spokesperson for the Environment Senator Hanson-Young responded to the PM's comments today on changes environmental laws:
“The Prime Minster has today belled the cat on the Government’s plans to weaken environmental protections, making it easier for big miners and developers to get the green-light on projects that damage the environment.
“At a press conference today speaking on plans to amend federal Environment Laws (the EPBC Act) the Prime Minister said:
‘We want to remove impediments that are unnecessarily preventing investment and development from taking place. Now, this process will enable standards to be upheld, but ensure process doesn’t destroy projects.’
“This will put our environment and wildlife at huge risk. Already koala’s are facing extinction with their habitat being destroyed from development and land-clearing at record rates.
“Rushing changes to the country’s environmental laws is designed to soften the environmental assessment process so new mines and big developments can get the green-light, regardless of the environmental damage they will cause.
“These changes need to go through the Parliament, and the Greens will fight for stronger protections, with an independent watchdog, with teeth to enforce them, because the Government can not be trusted to look after the environment.
“Australians will be very disappointed if Labor rolls over for Scott Morrison and passes these rushed and flawed changes that will allow mining companies and developers a free reign over our precious environment.
“Labor should stand with the Greens to oppose new laws that undermine environmental protections and will result in more wildlife being killed.
It’s pathetic that the Morrison Government is using the cover of Covid19 to scrap protections for the environment. Labor shouldn’t fall for it."