Tech focus for Greens leader Bandt


Denham Sadler
Senior Reporter

Adam Bandt is the new leader of the Greens, with the party to campaign on a Green New Deal and to transform Australia into a renewable energy “superpower”.

Mr Bandt, the Greens member for Melbourne, was elected unopposed by the Greens party room on Tuesday morning after Richard Di Natale resigned from the position on Monday.

Larissa Waters and Nick McKim were elected as co-deputy leaders of the party.

At nearly the same time, Nationals leader Michael McCormack retained his position despite a leadership spill and challenge from Barnaby Joyce.

Adam Bandt
Adam Bandt offers a new focus on renewables

Following his election as Greens leader, Mr Bandt said he would focus the party’s attention on a Green New Deal, a “government-led plan of investment and action to build a clean economy and a caring society”.

“We are in the middle of a climate emergency and long-running jobs and inequality crises. People are angry and anxious because the government has no plans for the big problems facing the country. This is why Australia needs a Green New Deal,” Mr Bandt said.

“A Green New Deal means government leading the country in transforming our economy, creating new jobs and industries powered by clean energy and delivering universal services like dental into Medicare and genuinely free education. This is what I will be fighting for.”

He also said the party would be emphasising the growth of the advanced mining and manufacturing sectors, powered by renewable energy and clean technologies.

Mr Bandt said he wanted there to be a “manufacturing renaissance”.

“I want Australia to be the renewable energy superpower that people bring businesses to from overseas because we can provide them with cheap clean energy as we phase out coal,” he said.

“Let’s increase our capacity to process a lot of our minerals here so we can sell the rest of the world the things they’ll need in a zero-carbon economy. I want Australia to make things in a new economy and with a Green New deal we can.”

The Green New Deal is an existing Greens policy. The party’s website describes it as “beating the climate crisis, creating a fairer economy and a more equal society, together”.

“We need a Green New Deal to tackle social and economic inequality, while taking the action scientists say is necessary to beat the climate crisis. A plan that is clean and green, transformative, just and fair and people-powered,” it said.

“A Green New Deal is a massive opportunity to change the way we do things in Australia, to solve the climate crisis and to ensure everyone has a good life.”

There won’t be a leadership change in The Nationals for the time-being, with Mr McCormack retaining his position following a spill, also on Tuesday morning.

Spurred by the resignation of deputy Nationals leader Bridget McKenzie following the sports rorts scandal, a leadership spill was called with Barnaby Joyce throwing his hat in the ring.

But Mr McCormack emerged successful, with David Littleproud to serve as deputy leader of the party.

Resources minister Matt Canavan had earlier resigned from his position and backed Mr Joyce and will not be returning to his position.

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