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Monday, 22 August 2011
Page: 8877


Ms MARINO (ForrestOpposition Whip) (10:40): Today we see hundreds of trucks here in Canberra with the Convey of No Confidence in the Labor Government. I am from a transport background in heavy haulage, earthmoving, freight and logistics. Those in the transport sector who have come to Canberra today, at their own considerable expense, know that they are going to pay for Labor's carbon tax. I thank them for being here, particularly those from Western Australia. I know what the trip is costing them and I thank them for being prepared to stand up for their industry and families.

The Labor government will hit the transport sector, their customers and consumers with their carbon tax on diesel from July of 2014. The Australian Trucking Association has estimated that the carbon tax will cost the industry $510 million in the 2014-15 year alone, with higher costs for smaller owner operators competing in aggressive markets. This sector is working hard. They have been buying lower emission engines, paying up to $50,000 per prime mover for low emissions engines. They recycle their oils. They reduce and manage waste. They have lowered their fuel consumption, and yet they are part of the Australian families, businesses and industry that have voluntarily, at major individual cost, effectively assisted in reducing Australia's emissions intensity by almost 50 per cent in the last 15 years.

I have spoken to some of these businesses. I can only imagine the accounting nightmare for those with a business that uses a combination of forklifts, bobcats, backhoes, four and a half-tonne vehicles and prime movers. Whether you have scrapers, dozers or whatever you have this is going to be a nightmare. Those in the transport sector have commonsense and experience. They know that Labor's carbon tax is going to have a disproportionate effect on rural and regional Australia because of the tax on diesel. They know that this is a compounding cascading tax and they know that this is a major issue in their own businesses as well as in their communities. They know it is a major cost for their customers and they know, as Ross Garnaut has said, that ultimately households in Australia will pay the carbon tax.

Regional people will pay more for everything—food, everyday goods, the houses they build or renovate, repairs and maintenance—everything that is delivered on the back of a prime mover. They also know that effective transport is the lifeblood of regional and remote Australia and they know there is no escape or mitigation, because this tax is going to hit domestic aviation fuel, domestic shipping fuel, rail fuel, stationary energy fuel—all of that will be hit by Labor's carbon tax. Overall, the transport sector will pay at least $800 million more every year under Labor's carbon tax and there is no guarantee that this tax will not apply to petrol in the future. In conclusion, I thank those who have come to Canberra today to voice their very serious concerns about the tax.