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Thursday, 13 August 2009
Page: 7840

Mr COULTON (2:36 PM) —My question is quite brief. It is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister advise the House how much more per hour it will cost small businesses in my electorate to run their air-conditioners under his government’s flawed emissions trading scheme?

Mr RUDD (Prime Minister) —Underpinning the position of the question just asked by the honourable member is this: the assumption that the position put out by Frontier Economics does not involve any adjustment to the carbon price. That is in fact the fallacy which is being advanced by those opposite. Will the Leader of the Opposition tell us whether in fact this policy which is not a policy will impact on the carbon price? The government has been upfront about the fact that the introduction of a carbon pollution reduction scheme will have an effect on prices in the economy, and that is why the government has detailed at some considerable length what it would provide by way of assistance for households in transition—and I answered that in response to an earlier question. When it comes to a range of industry sectors, including those which are emissions-intensive trade-exposed and the coal industry, they are also outlined in the government’s policy. When it comes to the climate change adjustment fund, the honourable member would also be familiar with the fact that that fund has also been established, particularly to assist with adjustment costs for regions and for small businesses and the business community in adjusting to changes to the carbon price.

I say to those opposite, as they now embark on their latest campaign of fear on this—because we know that there are two disciplines which those opposite are good at: fear and smear—that this will advance—

The SPEAKER —The Prime Minister will resume his seat. Has the Prime Minister concluded? The member for Kingston.