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Monday, 30 November 2009
Page: 9290

Senator XENOPHON (10:35 AM) —I indicate that I do support reasonable sitting hours. Fatigue scientists say that staying awake for 18 hours or longer is like having a blood alcohol level of 0.05 or higher. I would have thought that if any bills require sober reflection it is these Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme bills. Fatigue scientists also say that the longer you are awake the risk of hallucinations, paranoia and blurred vision increase. Memory and concentration lapse aside, I do not think it is reasonable that we have unreasonable sitting hours. I do not think legislation by exhaustion is the way to deal with the most important structural change to Australia’s economy. I support reasonable sitting hours. I think the outstanding question is whether we deal with this on Tuesday until it is concluded or whether there are reasonable sitting hours for that day as well. I look forward to the amendments in relation to that, but I do not support our sitting around the clock.

The PRESIDENT —Senator Fielding, there is some confusion: you have spoken to the amendment you moved. Are you seeking leave to make a further statement?

Senator Fielding —Yes.

The PRESIDENT —Is leave granted? There being no objection, leave is granted.