Monday, August 11, 2014

Letter to Josh Frydenberg: Please drop your proposed mandatory data retention regime


I ask you to drop your proposed mandatory data retention regime.

Police and intelligence agencies already have broad powers to request information about the communications of specified individuals be retained to support their investigations.

What you are seeking now is for that information to be retained for two years for ALL Australians, even if you're not being investigated.

You  want the following information retained:

Phone calls: detailed records of phone calls you make and receive, including the two numbers. If a mobile phone is involved, that will include the location of that phone, resulting in a detailed record of your location and movements being collected. See this example to understand just how revealing this information can be.
Email: detailed records of who you're sending emails to and receiving them from.

George Brandis provided confusing and conflicting information about whether details of web browsing are to be included.

You do want to retain a record of the address assigned to connections  when you access the Internet (originating IP address). This information will allow the police and ASIO to identify who has visited specific websites that are of interest to them. It will also allow copyright owners (via subpoena) to identify people they believe are infringing their copyright, by downloading or file-sharing.

Even without web browsing information included, a mandatory, society-wide data retention regime represents a massive invasion of the privacy of all Australians. It also subverts the principle of presumption of innocence by treating us all as potential suspects.

There will be substantial costs associated with implementing such a regime. One estimate is that it will add $100 per year to each internet bill.

The massive databases of highly sensitive (and valuable to organised criminals) information will also be highly prone to hacking and misuse, posing genuine threats to the safety of many Australians.

There are already more than sufficient powers available to Australia's intelligence and law enforcement agencies to have information retained about communications involving 'persons of interest'. There is no justification for this information to be retained on the rest of society.

I call on the Federal Government to drop its proposed mandatory, indiscriminate data retention regime, and to treat ordinary, law-abiding Australians as Citizens, Not Suspects.

Regards, Peter Campbell

Sign the Citizens Not Suspects petition, GetUp!

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Open letter to Josh Frydenberg: Please retain or increase the RET


You recently voted against Australia's carbon tax.

Please do not compromise Australia's Renewable Energy Target.

The RET is a very important and effective mechanism for transitioning Australia towards zero emissions clean energy.

The RET has only contributed 8% to electricity price increases from 2007/08 to the present.

The Carbon Tax only contributed 16%.

Over this same period distributor costs and charges have contributed 70% to electricity price increases

Investment in renewable energy has risen $5 billion per year.
Renewable energy capacity has almost doubled from 2001 to 2012.
86% of Australians think that Australia needs more renewable energy.
71% of Australians support the RET
90% of Australians want more electricity from solar
80% of Australians want more electricity from wind.

Overall the RET comprises only 3% of the total price of electricity bills.

Please support meaningful action on climate change and transitioning Australia to a new economy with clean energy and associated local industries and jobs.

For example, there are very significant opportunities for local manufacturing and services industry jobs around the Geelong region if more wind farms are built.

Regards, Peter Campbell
[address supplied]

Response from Josh Frydenburg 27/8/14

Dear Mr Campbell

Thank you for writing to me concerning the review into the Renewable Energy Target (RET).  I have noted your views. For your information the review has been established to allow the general public to make submissions to the Government.

As you are aware, the Government has released the Terms of Reference for a review into the RET, upholding a clear commitment to ensure the RET is working efficiently and effectively and to meet a legislative requirement for a review to be conducted in 2014.

An independent expert panel which brings together extensive policy, business and energy sector expertise will lead the review. The chair of the review, Mr Dick Warburton, has had an extensive career in business and industry, including time as a board member of the Reserve Bank of Australia.  Mr Warburton was appointed by the former Climate Change Minister in the Labor Government, Senator Wong, to head its Emissions Intensive Trade Exposed review under the CPRS process.

The Terms of Reference include examining the economic, environmental and social impacts of the RET, in particular the impacts on electricity prices, energy markets, the renewable energy sector, the manufacturing sector and Australian households. The review will be mindful of sovereign risk issues in any proposals it may present to the Government. Unlike the pattern from the previous Government, the review will be open and transparent and engage in consultation with a broad range of stakeholders, seeking submissions from the public and industry.  The review will be supported by a Secretariat based in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet involving specialists from the Departments of Environment, Industry, Treasury and the Clean Energy Regulator.

The Government will receive the report by the middle of the year and it will provide important input into the Government’s Energy White Paper.

Thank you once again for writing to me about this matter.

Yours sincerely

Josh Frydenberg
Federal Member for Kooyong | Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister
Parliament House Office | a: R1:44 Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600 | p: 02 6277 4606 | f: 02 6277 8546
Electorate Office | a: 695 Burke Road, Camberwell VIC 3124 | p: 03 9882 3677  |  f: 03 9882 3773
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