The Australian Guild of Screen Composers (AGSC) is the national industry association for Australian composers working in the film, television and multimedia. Activities of the AGSC include the annual Screen Music Awards (presented in association with APRA), lobbying on behalf of composers, professional development seminars and educational initiatives. The AGSC was first established in 1981 by Bruce Smeaton (Picnic at Hanging Rock) and Bruce Rowland (The Man from Snowy River). The current President is Guy Gross (The Adventures of Priscilla: Queen of the Desert) and Antony Partos (Animal Kingdom).
The Guild has swiftly moved to divest from fossil fuels, closing its account with the Commonwealth Bank, writing the bank to explain its actions, and opening an account with Bendigo Bank.
Antony Partos, Vice Chair of the Guild and award-winning composer of scores for Animal Kingdom, Rake and much more, said:
“The Australian Guild of Screen Composers does not wish to support any bank which invests in projects that degrade our land and decimate local flora and fauna such as the proposal by Indian Mining Company Adani, to potentially develop the world’s biggest coal mining project in Queensland.
“The proposal to ship the coal via the Great Barrier Reef will involve the dredging of 3 million cubic metres of the reef’s ocean floor to allow coal ships access. This dredge spoil is planned to be dumped on adjacent sensitive wetlands. The annual carbon emissions from this project alone will be greater than New Zealand’s total annual carbon emissions.
“Eight International Banks have publicly stated that they will not be involved in this massive development due to its undeniable degradation of the Great Barrier Reef and its associated impacts through carbon emissions. Unfortunately for Australia, the Big Four banks have refused follow suit.
“Bendigo Bank was an obvious choice to switch to because of its strong ethical charter and its unambiguous stance choosing not to invest in the fossil fuel industry. It is also dedicated to donating up to 80% of its profit back into the local community.”