"I'm passionate about Australia's transformation to a zero emissions future.
Addressing the climate emergency can create jobs, build communities, create new industries and save our future. That's why I am standing for the senate in the upcoming federal election."
Paul lives with his two teenage children on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula in Victoria. He understands the struggles of everyday Australians because he has lived them. Trying to find a job, a place to live, paying the bills each month, saving to buy a home, struggling with a mortgage and putting the kids through school.
Paul studied economics at the University of South Australia and State University of New York. He worked his way through university with jobs in retail, hospitality and tourism so understands the challenges of supporting yourself as a student and living on a minimum wage.
After university he worked for the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Australia’s North West. He promoted employment and economic development in regional towns, some fuelled by the mining industry and others left behind. He understands how economies can be transformed and is excited to play a role in Australia's transformation into a zero emissions economy.
Paul took a sea change and built an award winning tourism business on the pristine Ningaloo Reef. He represented the tourism industry on the Board of Ecotourism Australia and Australia's Coral Coast. While working on the reef that he was first exposed to the impacts of climate change. The first coral bleaching event in 1998 was the ‘canary in the coal mine’ for Paul and led him to research what was creating these changes. This understanding led him to volunteer as a climate educator while working for Parks Victoria and now on a small nature reserve on the Mornington Peninsula. It is here, over the last few years, that it has become apparent that there is a climate emergency.
This year Australians have faced an enduring drought, extreme heatwaves, mass fish deaths in our Murray-Darling basin, bushfires raging in NSW during winter, unprecedented bushfires in Tasmania and floods in Far North Queensland. These natural disasters have been devastating for the communities affected. Farmers have been hit hard. Australia's winter crop production fell 20% and our summer crop production is forecast to be down 33% (ABARE, 2019).
These are just some examples of the impacts of the 1°C warming that has already taken place. The economic and human costs of inaction on climate change are growing and taxpayers are footing the bill. Delaying action will increase those costs, make it more expensive to solve the problem and more difficult to implement the necessary changes.
Paul has spent the last 15 years understanding the science of climate change and developing the policies needed to avert the crisis. Policies that will reduce emissions, promote renewable energy and facilitate adaptation to the unavoidable impacts of climate change. Best of all these policies will create employment, lower power costs and contribute to a better way of life for ourselves and future generations.
We have the know how to solve the climate emergency. We just don’t have the political will. That’s why Paul is standing for the Senate as an Independent for Climate Action Now.