Farmers ride into Sydney with climate message

Thirty farmers ride through central Sydney on horseback to raise awareness of the impacts of climate change on rural Australia.The Farmers for Climate Action are riding in support of people from all walks of life from across NSW who are taking part in the #Time2Choose rally against fossil fuels.

The farmers on horseback, from the New England and Liverpool Plains, will be joined by a number of farmers on foot, all of them travelling to Sydney to make their voices heard.

The farmers have also successfully crowd-funded an advert about the impacts of climate change on rural Australia, which will air for the first time in Country NSW and Victoria this weekend.

“Climate change is affecting farmers’ lives and livelihoods in rural Australia. This is not some far away issue on the other side of the world, it’s happening here now and as farmers we’re on the frontline,” said Farmers for Climate Action CEO Verity Morgan-Schmidt.

“We’re experiencing increasing extreme weather including heightened bushfire risks, changing frost windows and potential long term impacts on our ability to put food on Australia’s table. This is everyone’s problem so we decided it was time to stand up and speak out about it.

“It’s time to choose a cleaner future for everyone. No matter where you’re from and what your politics, we need to unite to alter our emissions trajectory and transition to a clean energy future.”

Charlie Prell, a fourth generation family farmer from Crookwell and Deputy Chair of Farmers for Climate Action, said the farmers were also bringing a message of hope to city dwellers: while politicians are failing to act on climate change, the agricultural community isn’t waiting around.

“We’re seeing the impacts of droughts and bushfires at first hand – and we’re not going to sit by and watch the destruction of our great southern land,” said Charlie Prell.

“Choosing a cleaner path away from dirty fossil fuels also brings opportunities for regional and rural Australia – including new jobs and investment in renewables, and energy independence.

“I’ve seen this firsthand; I host renewable energy on my farm, which is providing a secure second income for my family and benefits to my local community as well as lower emissions.”

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