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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 715

Mr WATTS (Gellibrand) (13:39): In 2009, the then opposition leader told the nation, 'I will not lead a party that is not as committed to effective action on climate change as I am.' In 2010, that same man said to 'effectively combat climate change' the nation 'must move to a situation where all or almost all of our energy comes from zero or very near zero emissions sources'.

In 2016, this same man, now Prime Minister, sat in impotent silence at the table of the House of Representatives while his Treasurer and Deputy Prime Minister inanely brandished a hunk of coal at the chamber like naughty schoolboys on muck-up day. In 2016, the same man, now Prime Minister, tells us—against the protests of scientists, businesses, economists and even Australian energy companies themselves—that Australia's future relies on new taxpayer funded coal fired power generators.

For Australians who have watched this capitulation in horror, I have a simple message: Labor understands that Australia's future is renewable. This is what it looks like, Prime Minister! That is what you should be waving around at the dispatch box.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Mr Coulton ): Order! I will have no more of those props. The member for Gellibrand is warned.

Mr WATTS: We will call it even. The path to stopping climate change, the path to cheaper power for our nation, the Australian economy, the path to the future, lies in renewable energy. And the Australian Labor Party will provide the leadership that Australia needs to make it a reality.