23rd July 2015



Friends of the Earth Adelaide have recently informed the Royal Commission into the Nuclear Fuel Cycle of a factual error in Issues Paper 1, concerning the regulation of Aboriginal Heritage matters in South Australia. Issues Paper 1, which deals with the exploration, extraction and milling of uranium, states that Aboriginal sites of significance are protected by the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988.

“The Royal Commission was informed in writing that this is not the case for BHP Billiton, South Australia’s biggest miner,” said Nectaria Calan of Friends of the Earth Adelaide.  “Under the Indenture Act, which applies solely to BHP Billiton, the company’s Olympic Dam mine and some

15, 000 square kilometres of the surrounding Stuart Shelf are exempt from the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988.  This exemption would carry through to any future expansion of uranium mining by BHP Billiton at Olympic Dam or in the surrounding area.”

In his recent response to Friends of the Earth Adelaide Royal Commissioner Kevin Scarce insisted that in the event of an expansion of uranium mining Aboriginal Heritage matters would be regulated by the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988.

“This is simply not the law throughout the state,” said Ms Calan.  “Friends of the Earth Adelaide have supplied the Royal Commission with referenced information regarding the Roxby Downs (Indenture Ratification) (Amendment of Indenture) Amendment Act 2011, which amends the current Indenture Act to apply to any expansion formally announced by the company up until October 2016. If it was an honest mistake to begin with, it is negligent not to correct it.”

“At one point, the Royal Commissions reply almost acknowledges the inaccuracy by suggesting that it is the substance rather than source of legal protections that is important. …

Make a submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Murray River

The Murray needs water, not politics

Opposition to the Murray Basin Plan is mounting, and the stakes are very high. Rogue Senators and angry irrigators from the South Basin have managed to mount a Senate Select Committee Inquiry into the Basin Plan. The Inquiry will look into the social and economic impacts of the Plan’s implementation. Essentially, though, it is about attacking the river-saving buyback of water for the environment. Some farmers and Irrigators believe that water buybacks are destroying communities and, somewhat surprisingly, hurting the environment. 

Public Meeting was held in Barham NSW on July 8th and was just the beginning of what could be another protracted political argument over how our largest river system is managed. But while the politics roll on, Basin ecosystems continue to face threats, including a looming drought and a Federal Government proposal to cap water buybacks

The Basin Plan already represents a huge political compromise. The 3200GL of environmental water promised in the Plan is barely enough to keep the iconic ecosystems of the Basin alive, especially given the uncertainties of climate change.

Can we risk more meddling in this historic agreement? Please consider making a submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Governments proposal to cap water buybacks for the environment.

Submissions close 31st July 2015.

Water Amendment Bill 2015 – Brief guide to writing a submission.


New website/enewsletter – One Step Off the Grid

FOE members and friends who are interested in renewable energy and off grid living might be interested in this new website being set up by the excellent RenewEconomy – One Step Off the Grid. Enjoy!

Introducing our new sister site – One Step Off The Grid

“RenewEconomy is proud to announce the launch of One Step Off The Grid, our sister site that will focus on the consumer side of the energy market, and how the uptake of rooftop solar, battery storage and other technologies will usher in a dramatic transformation of our energy system”.

“Australia is at the cutting edge of this revolution. Already, it has more “pro-sumers” – consumers that produce at least some of their own electricity needs – per head of population than any other country. The advent of battery storage will offer even more choice. For some, it will mean the ability to leave the grid.

“But what are the social, economic, and business impacts of this transformation? How do consumers navigate their way through the complexity of tariffs, policy changes, and new technologies, and make the choice that suit their needs? Do we really want suburban households to quit the grid? Will the utilities evolve their business models?

“That is why we have created One Step Off The Grid. It is a free website and will have a weekly newsletter (click here to sign up for the newsletter), although it will be updated daily.

“It will provide information to consumers – in households, business and communities – on all of the latest developments, such as these new projections on commercial solar uptake, and the latest on solar, battery storage, tariff and policy changes.

“It also will focus on stories of what families, businesses, communities and townships have done, and are doing”.…

Protest against supertrawler overfishing and seal cull August 1st

Join the protest against supertrawler overfishing and the proposed seal cull in the Coorong, Saturday 1 August 11am, SA Parliament House.

“Please join Animal Liberation SA and others for a peaceful protest against super trawlers, overfishing and the seal cull. The Geelong Star is permitted to catch 16,500 tonnes of redbait, jack mackerel and sardines. The removal of such species known as baitfish upsets the entire marine eco system. Bait fish is the food for many marine mammals, fish and sea birds including dolphins, seals, larger fish and sharks. With 90% of the earth’s fish stock gone, it is time to stop the plunder of our seas”.

Facebook event link


Make the switch to a renewable energy future

Take advantage of this opportunity to support Conservation SA when switching your electricity provider to environmentally friendly Diamond Energy. Friends of the Earth Adelaide are a member group of Conservation SA and supportive of the good work they do.

Conservation SA is excited to partner with Diamond Energy, an electricity retailer supporting the Renewable Energy Target (RET) and new renewable generation projects. We’ve done the research and believe your best option in SA is Diamond Energy.

By making the switch to an energy company that is passionate about renewables and protecting the Renewable Energy Target, you’re helping to keep our state a world leader in renewables. And by switching to Diamond Energy now, you are also supporting Conservation SA.

For every Conservation SA supporter who signs up through this offer, Conservation SA receives a small contribution. These funds will go towards our work advocating for renewables in SA!

The switch to Diamond Energy is easy – it can be done online and only takes a couple of minutes.


Why should I switch my electricity retailer?

The Renewable Energy Target (RET) has helped drive the generational shift towards rooftop solar and other forms of renewable energy in Australia. But the Dirty Three retailers AGL, Origin and Energy Australia are clinging on to the old ways of fossil fuel energy generation and are lobbying for the (RET) to be dismantled. The Renewable Energy Target is bringing down the electricity price and encouraging investment in renewable energy whilst at the same time creating thousands of clean technology jobs. In other words, it’s working.

By supporting energy retailers who are working to protect the RET, you’re helping to transform Australia into the renewable energy powerhouse it should be.

*** The Dirty Three Energy retailers – June 2014 Greenpeace

Can I switch?

Anyone who is connected to the electricity grid can switch away from the Dirty Three energy retailers (they are lobbying to dismantle the Renewable Energy Target) to an energy retailer who is working to supporting the RET and with stronger environmental credentials.…