The online campaign ‐ ‘Freeze Fossil Fuels’ – lets people find out their local councils’ fossil fuel investment status and petition it to divest. It aims to inspire people to unite and lead their local government authority to build a fossil-free community.35 Australian Councils have already committed to divesting from fossil fuels and Ben & Jerry’s and 350.org Australia aim to increase this number. Internationally, New York and San Francisco have been the biggest cities to divest and are also suing the fossil fuel industry for the costs of climate impacts on their cities.
From Friday 27 April, 350.org Australia will commence the Accelerate tour across Australia, led by 350.org co-founder and leading environmental activist, Bill McKibben, giving Australians the opportunity to learn more about why fossil fuel divestment will make such an impact on tackling climate change and how to take direct action.
The five-city tour will visit Newcastle, Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Adelaide until 4 May. To show its commitment to the movement, Ben & Jerry’s will also give away free ice cream from its ‘Scoop Truck’ outside tour events in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne, encouraging Australian ice cream lovers to support the campaign by decorating a giant #freezefossilfuels mural and signing the petition.
As part of the campaign, Ben & Jerry’s has revealed how fossil fuel divestment will help to sustain the production of Ben & Jerry’s famous ice cream in the longer-term. The company has warned many of its popular flavours remain ‘endangered’ as a result of the effects of climate change and could be consigned to Ben & Jerry’s unfortunate ‘Flavour Graveyard’ as soon as 2020.
Bert Naber, Ben & Jerry’s Australia spokesperson said:
● April 27 – Newcastle – Newcastle Town Hall
● May 1 – Sydney – Sydney Town Hall (Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Truck will be present)
● May 2 – Canberra – QT Hotel (Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Truck will be present)
● May 3 ‐ Melbourne ‐ Collingwood Town Hall (Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Truck will be present)
● May 4 – Adelaide – Elder Hall, University of Adelaide