Northern Territory Council of Social Service

Climate Justice

A well-managed transition to a clean economy will create a more just, equitable and sustainable NT

Background

Climate change, caused by increasing carbon pollution primarily from burning fossil fuels and land clearing, is one of the most significant issues facing people, communities, economies, and our planet. And although climate change effects all life, the people experiencing disadvantage and poverty are the most vulnerable to its impacts, and to a poorly managed transition to clean energy.

The NT is already experiencing the impacts of higher temperatures, changing rainfall patterns, and more frequent or intense weather events such as heatwaves, bushfire, flooding, and drought. These impacts threaten people’s homes, livelihoods, health, culture, quality of life, employment, as well as increasing risks and burdens for future generations.

Climate change will involve costs, but there will be benefits too: a well-managed transition to a cleaner economy is an opportunity to create a more just, equitable and sustainable NT.

Policy & Advocacy

Climate Change is a social justice issue and climate change affects everyone in the NT, however people who are already disadvantaged are suffering the most. People and communities with fewer resources have less money, choice and power to cope, adapt or recover to events such as cyclones, heatwaves, fires, floods and storms.

As a society, we need to reduce carbon emissions now so that future and more extreme climate change is averted and ensure that the transition to a low carbon future provides solutions and opportunities for everyone. This transition presents an opportunity to address inequality and poverty in the NT.

NTCOSS advocates for Federal Government and the NT Government to take effective action on climate change and to support people, communities and community sector organisations to become more resilient to extreme weather and natural disasters. No one should have to suffer extreme heat without relief, or have to go to bed freezing cold. While some home owners can afford solar panels and to make their homes more energy efficient, people on low incomes are struggling with electricity bills, going cold in winter and sweltering through summer heatwaves.

NTCOSS advocates for a transition to renewable energy for the NT; legislated carbon emission targets; and improved energy efficiency measures, including minimum energy ratings. Governments should support people on low incomes, especially renters, to have solar, battery storage and more efficient homes so they can reduce their electricity bills and cope in extreme weather.