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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 724


Mr COLEMAN (Banks) (14:13): My question is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister update the House on how the government's energy policies will keep power bills affordable and improve security for hardworking Australian families and businesses, including in my electorate of Banks?

Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:13): I thank the honourable member for his question. Like all honourable members, the honourable member has businesses in his electorate that depend upon affordable and reliable security of energy. Secure power is absolutely critical and affordable power is absolutely critical for businesses, as it is for households.

Mr Champion: What happened in New South Wales?

The SPEAKER: The member for Wakefield.

Mr TURNBULL: Honourable members will understand, when they speak to their constituents, how shocked their constituents are by the doubling of energy prices over the last decade. Overwhelmingly, it is the consequence of Labor Party policies that put ideology ahead of pragmatic, businesslike approaches to energy. The reality is that the Labor Party today stands for unreliable power and unaffordable power. That is the package they are presenting, and we see the most graphic proof of that in South Australia.

Wherever I go in Australia, I meet with Australians who are battling higher and higher energy prices, whether it is the workers at the Viridian glass plant in Dandenong; whether it was the tuna fishermen in Port Lincoln; or whether it was the workers at NowCare in Gilmore, with the honourable member, on Friday, a family-owned chemical and pharmaceutical business that is being battered by higher and higher energy prices right across the board. Portland Aluminium, another excellent example, is a business is major input is energy, and it has been going through the roof because of the Labor Party's ideological driven approach to energy prices. We see what has happened in South Australia. The proof is there. It is absolutely clear—state Labor governments pursuing unachievable unaffordable renewable targets with no plan to secure supply at all.

We have set out the road map to do that, with an objective technology-agnostic approach that will do three things: give us affordable energy, give us reliable energy and meet our emissions reductions targets. Labor cannot do that, and that is why the opposition leaders in South Australia, Victoria and Queensland have been right in pledging that they will abandon their Labor state governments' unrealistic renewables targets—because those targets will cripple the businesses of their states and will place continuing and indefensible pressure on household budgets. That is the price of Labor's assault on households and businesses. (Time expired)