Wednesday, 1 December 2010
Once again, a big "thank you" to all those who helped during our campaign for Melbourne, and all those who voted Green.
As at Wednesday 1 December, I have received slightly more than 31% of the votes in the seat of Melbourne. This is the highest Green vote of any seat in Victoria and is a swing of around +3.8% - very strong considering the big swing to the conservatives across the State.
Even with the Liberals supporting Labor, the seat remains a Green/Labor one, with the margin now over 7%.
You can check the latest count here.
Please note that there are still many postal, absentee and early polling centre votes to count so these numbers are not yet final.
The decision by the Liberal party to direct preferences to Labor ahead of the Greens resulted in Liberal preferences re-electing Labor's Bronwyn Pike.
For many, this election was about preferences, hung parliaments, and fear. For us, it was about principles, policies and inspiration.
Looking back at this experience, the journey was well worth it. I would always have regretted it if I had not stood, and I learnt so much along the way, and gained so much from the many people I met.
Let's hope we'll be able to surmount the larger hurdle of overcoming the combined Liberal/Labor vote next time, and here's to the promotion of Green values.
Here is my speech on election night.
Friday, 26 November 2010
|Chatting to an inner city local at Lygon Street|
Your vote is powerful. If I get elected I commit to pursuing these and other improvements with a vigour that the major parties choose not to match.
I did my last radio interview with Jon Faine on ABC 774 radio this morning. After the interview I chatted to some locals in Lygon Street who were born in Italy. They were all interested in voting Green as an alernative to the same-same policies of Labor and the Coalition.
|Chatting with Lygon Street locals|
At 12:30 I attended the last event before the election with all the Greens MPs and the inner city candidates on the steps of parliament. You can watch the video below.
Its over to you the voter now. Remember that its your vote and your preference, you don't need to follow the how-to-vote cards of any political party.
If you vote 1 for me (and number all the other boxes) and I get elected, the state seat of Melbourne will change for the better.
Thursday, 25 November 2010
We appreciate their rich biodiversity and their beauty. In short, they are unique and wonderful. Yet in 2010, we still clearfell and burn them.
Labor has broken their 2006 election promise to “protect the last significant stands of old growth forest available to logging”.
Brown Mountain and other old growth forests were recently logged. The Brumby government is actually in the logging business via their agency VicForests. The Supreme Court found this year the Victorian Government to be in breach of the law for not ensuring threatened species surveys were conducted prior to logging.
Only about one quarter of the paltry 40,000 hectares the Labor government eventually protected this year is actually old growth.
Logging in Victoria's water catchments also continues despite clear scientific evidence it is decreasing water supplies across the state.
It is worth noting that most of our native forests logged, around 80%, ends up as low value woodchips, not timber. Less than 2% is furniture grade.
Despite the ongoing logging of our native forests, jobs have dwindled in this sector. Three decades ago there were around 40 sawmills operating in Gippsland. Today there are only 6 or 7.
Only this week, Bob Humphries from the Cann River saw mill said "The writing is on the wall - we are not going to survive"
Yet the best John Brumby and Minister Jennings can do is to offer to facilitate "peace talks", while the Liberals have committed to continued logging that will destroy our remaining forests.
Labor and the Coalition have both abdicated responsibility to save our forests despite overwhelming community support for this.
Its no surprise then that support is rising for the Greens as we are committed to an immediate logging industry transition out of native forests to plantations. There are enough hardwood and softwood plantations for this immediate transition to occur. This transition is 10 years overdue.
We need action on protecting our remaining native forests, not more broken promises and subterfuge from our governments.
This is the UN International Year of Biodiversity. We the Greens will protect our remaining native forests from logging so that their biodiversity, the carbon they store, the water they produce is safeguarded.
We will promote a vibrant jobs-rich timber industry based on existing hardwood and softwood plantations that are available right now. Our vision is for East Gippsland’s forests to be protected and part of World Heritage area with long term prosperity from nature-based tourism.
Sunday, 21 November 2010
|A gantry offshore associated with the Wonthaggi desalination plant|
Saturday, 20 November 2010
Tuesday, 16 November 2010
I have visited several railway stations during my campaign. Its a great opportunity to meet and hear from locals on their way to work and to highlight the many opportunities to improve our public transport system.
Tuesday, 9 November 2010
Friday, 5 November 2010
The seat of Melbourne is home to some of Victoria’s most critical – and iconic – public transport lines and hubs including Flinders Street Station, Southern Cross Station, the City Loop and Melbourne’s famous tram network.
But even within the Melbourne electorate, the public transport system is running down. At Newmarket station in peak period there were 18 trains to the city in 1929, and today there are 12. At South Kensington there were 16, but today there are 10. That pattern of rundown and neglect is true across the network.
The woeful state of the current system is unacceptable and immediate action is required. We need a public transport system that can respond to a growing population and offer a real alternative to car use.
The Greens have a six point plan to fix public transport:
- End the failed privatisation experiment
Under privatisation, costs have dramatically increased, performance is appalling and planning is chaotic. No one is accountable for the system as a whole.
- Establish a powerful, accountable Public Transport Authority (PTA)
- Fix urgent problems
Expert task forces will act now to increase capacity, review ticketing, plan for expansion and establish the PTA.
- Make public transport safe
Staff all train stations from first train to last, bring back tram conductors, fence rail lines and fix level crossings.
- Extend rail and tram systems
Urgently extend the rail line from South Morang to Mernda, and tram routes to East Malvern Station, Doncaster Shoppingtown and Knox City. Double-track key lines, order more trains and make better use of the existing tram fleet.
- Introduce ‘Swiss-style’ public transport for regional Victoria
Reform V/Line, order more high-speed trains, devise an integrated rail-bus network connecting regional Victorians to local, inter-regional and metropolitan destinations.
Public transport should be in public hands for the public good. The new Public Transport Authority will have the skills and experience needed to build great public transport. With a new agency, we can cut through the byzantine bureaucratic mess public transport users currently deal with, abolishing:
- Director of Public Transport and the Public Transport Division of the Department of Transport
- Transport Ticketing Authority
- Public Transport Ombudsman
- Public Transport Customers Charter Consultative Committee
The new PTA aims to be small, smart and transparent. Public transport experts will be recruited from the best-performing agencies around the world, instead of re-assigning staff from the existing, failed bureaucracies. Based on the experience of Perth, Vancouver and Zurich, around 60 staff are required, including a dozen public transport experts. The PTA will hold public board meetings and seek community input into its plans. Public accountability is key.
Victoria has the potential for a world-class public transport system. It’s time to get started.
- Six point plan to fix public transport
- Public transport a hot issue in Melbourne and Richmond
- Opposition pledges Doncaster rail line study
Saturday, 30 October 2010
Although I often drive an electric car and catch public transport, I'm a regular and enthusiastic cyclist. At this time of year, it's a pleasure to pedal around Melbourne on two wheels, taking in the sights and sounds of the city at her best. The Melbourne electorate is one of the most convenient to navigate by bike, but my aim is to make it even more cycle-friendly by working to resolve the issues repeatedly raised by cyclists, pedestrians and drivers. There are some general issues which usually involve the disappearing bike lane - whether because of a parked bus, road works, or just bad planning. But there are several specific issues which can use some attention. Here are my top ten:
1. North bank of Yarra River
7. North Melbourne station
Thursday, 28 October 2010
I thought I'd give you some insight into life on the campaign trail. This has been my day today.
Wednesday, 20 October 2010
- Date: Thursday, October 21, 7:30pm
- Location: Harbour Kitchen, under the Bourke St NAB headquarters on the Victoria Harbour side.
- Greens – Brian Walters
- Labor – Bronwyn Pike (sitting member)
- Liberal – Luke Martin
Tuesday, 19 October 2010
- Date: 23 October · 11:00 - 13:00
- Start at: Kensington Railway Station
|Cyclists on Canning Street bike path|
Come along and learn about opportunities to improve safe cycle routes in Melbourne, and to make Melbourne greener.
See also Facebook event
Wednesday, 13 October 2010
Thursday, 7 October 2010
Inspirational Greens leader Senator Bob Brown launched Brian's campaign for the state seat of Melbourne on Monday 11 October at the Auditorium, Melbourne City Conference Centre.
Trent McCarthy was Master of Ceremonies. Adam Bandt (Greens MP for Melbourne), Brian, and Senator Bob Brown spoke at the launch.
We've already shown what we can do at the Federal level with strong grass roots campaigning, and commitment to values like compassion, equality and sustainability. We heard that Melbourne is very close, and everyone's vote will be powerful.
|Local people explain why they are voting for Brian|
|A good turn out|
|Adam Bandt MP, Melbourne (federal)|
|Adam Bandt MP, Brian Walters, Senator Bob Brown|
|Sally Polmear and Senator Sarah Hanson-Young|
|Senator Bob Brown|
Tuesday, 5 October 2010
Last night I attended "The Brittle Dark" - a poetic and musical soirée at Fortyfive Downstairs.
- Terry Lane (broadcaster, journalist, author and prominent free speech advocate);
- Barry Heard (Vietnam veteran and author of "Well Done, Those Men" and other books);
- Barry Jones AO (Australian intellectual, former parliamentarian and minister);
- Julian Burnside AO (barrister, patron of the arts, and human rights advocate);
- Rod Quantock (comedian and activist);
- Mary Kenneally (comedian and activist);
- Sam Zifchak (professional poet, and events co-ordinator at the Australian Poetry Centre - part of the Wheeler Center).