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Tuesday, 16 June 2009
Page: 6182

Mr JOHNSON (4:24 PM) —Eight hours notice was all that was given by the Rudd Labor government to those who have an interest in doing their little bit to make a contribution to climate change related issues in our country. Eight hours notice was all that was given to the constituents of Ryan who wanted to invest in a solar panel. It was three weeks too early—that is the dilemma that people in the Ryan electorate had to confront when they woke up on Wednesday, 10 June, to be told that the Rudd government’s $8,000 solar rebate was going to be axed. We all know that the Rudd government in its budget had said that 30 June would be the deadline, so people had planned around this. Of course, in the end, as with most things, it was all spin and all talk, all hype and hypocrisy, by the Rudd Labor government.

Certainly from my perspective as the member for Ryan, this has been one of the dominant issues in my office in the last week. People have been very disappointed by the difference between the rhetoric and the reality. I have tried to reassure them that in regard to renewable energy, and in particular solar, I as their local member have been a strong supporter of all good policy. Unfortunately, the Rudd Labor government seems to say one thing and do another thing. I want to assure the people of Ryan that I will certainly be working hard to ensure that renewable energy issues dominate the policy compass of the Turnbull opposition.

I acknowledge that the people of Ryan, in the western suburbs of Brisbane, want to do their bit, and installing solar panels is one thing. But, when they rely on statements in the federal budget that say 30 June will be the deadline and that proves to not be the case, how can people plan ahead? How can people rely on the statements of a federal government, a federal cabinet minister, when in reality it is all talk and spin? I want to say to the Rudd Labor government: when it comes to the next election, make sure that the deception, the deceit, the spin and the rhetoric is not there again. We all know that that is one thing that they are very good at, but, when it comes to the actual substance, it does not come to fruition. I want to say to the people of Ryan that I will be doing all I can to ensure that renewable energy is front and centre and very strong in the policy development of the opposition. We have to explore all options: wind, tidal, ethanol and geothermal, as well as nuclear. I know it is not popular to talk about nuclear, but this is a debate that has to happen. (Time expired)