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Tuesday, 26 June 2012
Page: 7976

Carbon Pricing


Mr ABBOTT (WarringahLeader of the Opposition) (14:01): My question is to the Prime Minister. Can the Prime Minister confirm that the government's own modelling shows that Australia's domestic emissions will rise by eight per cent, not fall by five per cent, under her carbon tax?


Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (14:01): What the government's facts and figures show is, as a result of putting a price on carbon, we will cut carbon pollution by 160 million tonnes in 2020. The government will achieve what has been a bipartisan target about emissions reduction.

The Leader of the Opposition, of course, has continued day after day to misrepresent all aspects of carbon pricing: to misrepresent what it will achieve; to misrepresent who pays the price—it is of course large businesses that generate carbon pollution that will pay the price; to misrepresent the impacts on Australian households. Today he has even been out trying to scare cats and dogs about the impact of carbon pricing—out at the RSPCA telling poor old Fido and Fluffy a fairytale about how a cobra and a python is coming to get them! I can assure the Leader of the Opposition that on 1 July cats will still purr, dogs will still bark, and the Australian economy will continue to get stronger. We will continue to see jobs grow and we will see Australian families with the benefit of tax cuts, family payment increases and pension increases, and the Leader of the Opposition's fear campaign will collide with the facts, with the truth.


Mr ABBOTT (WarringahLeader of the Opposition) (14:03): Madam Deputy Speaker, I ask a supplementary question. Can the Prime Minister confirm that we will only achieve our five per cent emissions reduction target by 2020 by buying almost 100 million tonnes of carbon credits from abroad in just that year at a cost of more than $3.5 billion in just that year?


Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (14:03): The government's carbon pricing scheme is an internationally linked scheme. That is absolutely true. The reason for doing that is to ensure that Australian businesses can buy carbon abatement for the least possible cost. The Leader of the Opposition, to the extent that he has bothered at all to deal with a policy in this area—and because of his negativity he has not really dealt with a policy solution—has said that they would not internationally link any arrangements if he were ever Prime Minister. That is a recipe for ensuring that Australian businesses pay a greater cost per tonne of carbon pollution abatement than they would under an internationally linked scheme. The Leader of the Opposition is known for wandering around criticising the government's carbon price as too high. What, of course, he has never told—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Prime Minister will resume her seat. The Manager of Opposition Business on a point of order?

Mr Pyne: The Prime Minister could not have been asked a more factual question. It simply relied upon an answer: yes or no.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): The Manager of Opposition Business will resume his seat! The Prime Minister will return to the question before the chair.

Ms GILLARD: The answer to the Leader of the Opposition's question is: yes, our scheme is internationally linked. That is best for Australian business. It gives them the lowest possible costs of adjustment. The Leader of the Opposition stands for a scheme which would charge Australian businesses a far higher price and as a result would impose on Australian households a bill of $1,300 per year. We stand for a lower cost scheme and a cleaner future. (Time expired)

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Leader of the Opposition is seeking to table a document?

Mr Abbott: Yes, it shows that Australia's domestic emissions rise from—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Is the Leader of the Opposition seeking to table a document?

Mr Abbott: 578 million to 621 million tonnes under the carbon tax.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Leader of the Opposition will resume his seat! Is leave granted for the document to be tabled? Leave is not granted.