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Thousands of Australian protest on climate change

08-16-2010 09:11 BJT

CANBERRA, Aug 15 (Xinhua) -- Tens of thousands of protesters on Sunday rallied on the streets across Australia to urge the major political parties to take action on climate change.

Both Labor Party and the coalition have failed to take decisive action to cut Australia's pollution levels in the run-up to the federal election, Walk Against Warming rallies in Australia's capital cities heard on Sunday.

Events held in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, Sydney and Perth attracted tens of thousands of people.

Sydney's city was filled with about 10,000 protesters who expressed their disappointment at the failure of politicians to stand up to the country's "big polluters".

"It's time for our political leaders to step up and take responsibility," Pepe Clarke of the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales told Australian Associated Press.

A Walk Against Warming event in Brisbane attracted between 8000 and 10,000 people, organizers said.

"Despite growing cynicism about both major political parties since the Copenhagen summit (in December last year) and the failure of the emissions trading scheme, thousands of people have still turned out to voice their concerns about the future," Toby Hutcheon, executive director of Queensland Conservation, told Australian Associated Press.

In Melbourne, thousands of protesters took to the streets to letterbox the key electorates of Melbourne, Deakin and Latrobe with a message for action on climate change.

"Poll after poll shows that Australians want action on climate change yet just one week from the federal election, both major parties are still failing to produce plans that will reduce pollution," Environment Victoria's campaign director, Mark Wakeham, said, referring to the federal election on Aug 21.

"So this year we're changing tack and taking our message straight to the people who matter the most - the voters."

The annual Walk Against Warming has been held for the past five years, with organizers calling for a price on pollution and a guarantee to reduce emissions.

Queensland Conservation Council spokesman Toby Hutcheon said this year's event has been timed to coincide with the federal election campaign.

"This is an opportunity for the community to voice their concerns about this and call upon the next Australian government to take more firm action on climate change," Hutcheon told ABC News on Sunday.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source: Xinhua

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