The Uniting Church WA calls on the State and Federal Governments to prioritise investment in renewable energy and social housing in WA.
The decision was made at the 44th Annual Meeting of the Synod of WA where more than 150 Uniting Church members from around Western Australia came together to discuss issues of importance in the life of the Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of Western Australia, and the wider community this weekend, Friday 11 to Sunday 13 September.
The Uniting Church in Australia National Assembly and the Synod of Western Australia have always held particular concerns about the most vulnerable in our community, as well as minimising impacts on the environment.
A simple way to address both of these concerns is by ensuring that people in social housing can reduce their electricity and gas costs through the provision of energy-efficient housing design, materials and appliances.
An opportunity now exists to address the shortage in social housing by building more homes for the people who need them most and create construction jobs in the process. People in social housing should also be the first to access the benefit of localised renewable energy supply and storage.
The economic recovery required by the COVID-19 crisis is an important opportunity to fast-track emissions reductions by prioritising investment in renewable energy and transition planning at both State and Federal levels.
Given the push from some sectors for a “gas-fired recovery”, it is important that no Federal or State Government subsidisation of fossil fuel expansion occurs. It is inappropriate to attempt to solve one crisis (COVID-19 economic downturn) by exacerbating another (climate crisis).
Susy Thomas, the newly installed Moderator of the Uniting Church WA, said it is important for the church to speak up on this issue.
“As Christians, the Bible makes it clear that we are called to love our neighbour, care for the vulnerable in our community and challenge unjust systems,” she said.
“As we recover from the economic impact of COVID-19 we are calling for Government stimulus measures that focus on positive impacts for both the environment and the most vulnerable in our community.”