How Jess Walsh voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should make laws and regulations that protect and conserve the health of the Great Barrier Reef for future generations

Division Jess Walsh Supporters vote Division outcome

27th Feb 2020, 12:31 PM – Senate Motions - Great Barrier Reef - Climate change

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Queensland Senator Larissa Waters (Greens), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) the Great Barrier Reef supports approximately 64,000 jobs and generates $6 billion for the Australian economy annually,

(ii) approximately half of the shallow water coral of the Great Barrier Reef has been lost since 2016 due to successive coral bleaching incidents,

(iii) the Centre for Tourism and Regional Opportunities has reported a dramatic decline in domestic tourism since successive coral bleaching events,

(iv) in February 2020, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority survey teams found significant bleaching at three reefs in the Shelburne Bay and Wuthathi region of the Great Barrier Reef,

(v) current National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Coral Reef Watch forecasts show a heightened risk of a mass bleaching events in the Great Barrier Reef in the coming weeks, and

(vi) climate change remains the greatest threat to the Great Barrier Reef; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to:

(i) implement a climate policy that accelerates actions to limit global warming to 1.5°C to protect the Great Barrier Reef and the jobs that it supports,

(ii) take all action necessary to properly protect the Great Barrier Reef and avoid the UNESCO World Heritage Committee needing to place the Great Barrier Reef on the World Heritage In Danger List, and

(iii) develop a clear plan to move Australia towards 100% clean energy, including a plan for a just transition for Australia's regional workforces so that regional economies can thrive and workers are protected.

absent Yes Not passed by a modest majority

24th Jul 2019, 3:47 PM – Senate Motions - Great Barrier Reef - Protect from climate change

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Queensland Senator Larissa Waters (Greens), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) on 17 July 2019, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority released a Position Statement on Climate Change, which stated: 'climate change is the greatest threat to the Great Barrier Reef. Only the strongest and fastest possible actions to decrease global greenhouse gas emissions will reduce the risks and limit the impacts of climate change on the Reef'... 'If we are to secure a future for the Great Barrier Reef and coral reef ecosystems globally, there is an urgent and critical need to accelerate actions to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. This must happen in parallel to taking actions to build the Reef's resilience',

(ii) in an address to the British Parliament on 9 July 2019, Sir David Attenborough criticised Australia for not taking the risks of climate change seriously, and imperilling the Great Barrier Reef,

(iii) at its meeting in 2015, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee gave the Australian Government five years to address the state of the Great Barrier Reef before it re-considered whether to include it on the World Heritage In Danger list—the Australian Government is due to submit a report addressing the protection of the Reef's Outstanding Universal Value to avert an In Danger listing by 1 December 2019,

(iv) scientific reports confirm that approximately half of the shallow water coral of the Great Barrier Reef has been lost since 2016 due to successive coral bleaching incidents,

(v) the Association of Marine Park Tourism Operators has signed a Reef Climate Declaration that acknowledges climate change as "the single biggest threat to the Great Barrier Reef" and states that "Australia must join the rest of the world to rapidly phase out coal and other fossil fuels and transition to renewable energy",

(vi) the Great Barrier Reef supports approximately 64,000 jobs and generates $6 billion for the Australian economy annually,

(vii) the science and the economics are clear that these jobs are at risk if strong action is not taken immediately to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and limit global temperature rises to 1.5°C, and

(viii) fossil fuel companies have donated nearly $5 million to the Liberals, The Nationals and Labor parties over the past four years; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to:

(i) affirm the advice of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority that climate change is the greatest threat to the Great Barrier Reef,

(ii) direct Mr Warren Entsch, Special Envoy for the Great Barrier Reef, to prioritise actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions,

(iii) implement a climate policy that accelerates actions to limit global warming to 1.5°C to protect the Great Barrier Reef,

(iv) take all action necessary to properly protect the Great Barrier Reef and avoid the UNESCO World Heritage Committee needing to place the Great Barrier Reef on the World Heritage In Danger list,

(v) revoke all federal approvals for the Adani Carmichael mine and not approve any new coal in Australia, and

(vi) develop a clear plan to move towards 100% clean energy, including a plan for a just transition for Australia's regional workforces affected by climate change so that regional economies can thrive and workers are protected, and ban corporate donations to political parties from the fossil fuel industry, an industry which financially benefits from this Government's lack of action on climate change.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

How "voted strongly against" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 1 0 10
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 1 1 2
Total: 1 12

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 1 / 12 = 8.3%.

And then