Reducing Emissions Must Ultimately Mean Less Stuff
WESTERN governments are trying to have it both ways: they want to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and they want to stimulate economic growth by us spending more money including on stuff. But this is not realistic.
Either the government impresses on the population that it must be content with less including smaller families, smaller houses and fewer pairs of shoes etcetera or there will be more emissions.
I’m happy to go along with less – I’ve never aspired to a luxurious lifestyle or a big family. But most of the rest of the population doesn’t seem to get it?
Viv Forbes does – see below, but Malcolm Turnbull doesn’t.
Australia’s Prime Minister, Kelvin Rudd, has woken up that Penny’s Ration-and-Tax (RAT) Scheme will destroy jobs.
But instead of killing the RAT Scheme, he proposes a massive carbon subsidy to offset the job destruction caused by the carbon tax.
Kevin and Malcolm [Malcolm Turnbull, Leader of the Opposition] need to make up their minds.
If they want to cut the production of harmless carbon dioxide, it MUST cause job losses in coal, power generation, cement, steel, farming and tourism.
But if job protection is important to them, they should abandon the RAT scheme immediately and concentrate on important matters.
Fiddling with it, achieves neither goal.
As for the subsidy, Kevin needs reminding that the money we get from Canberra is the money we sent to Canberra, less handling charges both ways.
A tax and subsidy policy always replaces real jobs in regional industry with fake jobs in the money laundering departments in Canberra.
Mr Viv Forbes
Rosewood, QLD 4340
28th July, 2009
The Coalition supports, and supported when in Government, an environmentally effective and economically responsible emissions trading scheme (ETS) as part of a co-ordinated global response to climate change.
Indeed the first legislation to establish an ETS was introduced by me as Environment Minister in 2007.
However, it is vital that we get the design right. A well designed ETS will achieve substantial reductions in emissions and at the same time ensure that we do not sacrifice jobs and industries to other countries which do not have a comparable price on carbon.
Right now, every party and interest group except the Rudd Government agrees that Labor’s ETS legislation is flawed and must be improved.
Despite our view the ETS should not be finalised until after the US Congress has determined the shape of America’s ETS and the Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen in December has determined the global community’s next steps, the Prime Minister is determined, purely for political purposes, to force an earlier vote on this legislation.
So the Coalition has examined what changes would be needed for us to consider supporting the legislation prior to the end of this year.
So in that practical context, I have set out nine issues of principle which must be addressed in Labor’s scheme. First and foremost is that an Australian ETS should offer no less protection for jobs, small business and industry than an American ETS which is presently in the form of the Waxman Markey Bill approved by the House of Representatives but yet to pass the US Senate.
In addition, an Australian ETS should enable us to take advantage of the full range of agricultural offsets (“green carbon) which will enable much greater reduction in our overall CO2 emissions.
To read the full release and list of issues which need to be addressed in the Rudd ETS click here
You can also watch my interview with Barrie Cassidy on Sunday on the ABC Insiders program here
All the best,
Leader of the Opposition
Federal Member for Wentworth
July 28, 2009
The picture was taken in the Grose Valley, Blue Mountains, Australia, in February 2009. It costs nothing, except time, to go bushwalking in the Blue Mountains.