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Tuesday, 2 April 2019
Page: 14473

Mr HART (Bass) (15:52): Tasmanians are not afraid of clean, green renewable energy. It is part of our industrial heritage. It's part of our state identity, our history. We understand hydroelectric generation, our world-class wind resource and the advantages of small- and large-scale solar. Our world-leading Australian Maritime College, the AMC, leads research on wave and tidal energy research. In the national context, we have much work to do to repair the damage and division around energy created and/or perpetuated by the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison government. That work can commence under a Shorten Labor government if elected. A Shorten Labor government will reduce pollution, invest in renewable energy and take real action on climate change to ensure that we hand a better deal to the next generation.

After six years of chaos, uncertainty and rising pollution under the Liberals, Australians need stability and certainty on climate change policy. That's what our plan delivers. Last week, I welcomed the member for Shortland and shadow assistant minister for climate change and energy to Launceston to announce the potential of a clean, green industrial process for the production of hydrogen in northern Tasmania, with an immediate commitment to a feasibility study of $250,000 towards hydrogen production in Northern Tasmania. The study will identify the best opportunities for northern Tasmania to be part of a supply chain in the globally massive industry, a $232 billion global juggernaut. Labor have committed $1.1 billion of funding to our national hydrogen strategy to develop a hydrogen industry in this country. Tasmania is well placed to tap into that industry.

We have three distinct advantages in Tasmania: boundless renewable energy with some of the world's best wind resources, access to water and power through our hydro system and a deepwater port to transport that hydrogen product to Japan and South Korea. This opportunity could produce thousands of jobs for Northern Tasmania within my electorate. We already know that Tasmania has been and should be a centre of excellence when it comes to advanced manufacturing. Hydrogen would be another great manufacturing industry in Northern Tasmania where Tasmania would help to decarbonise the rest of the world.

The development of the hydrogen industry in Australia is one part of Labor's plan for ensuring Tasmania capitalises on the benefits of Australia's transition to renewable energy. Labor's plan will tackle climate change to keep the economy growing by investing in renewable energy, boosting clean transport and infrastructure, working in partnership with business and supporting trade exposed industries to keep Australian businesses competitive, helping the land sector to cut pollution whilst giving farmers and the forestry industry new opportunities to earn income, and developing Australia's first national strategy on climate change and health to address the growing health impacts and risks of climate change. This is in stark contrast to those opposite.

The government has failed to deliver lower pollution, failed to lower power prices and failed to strengthen the economy through real action on climate change. Theirs is a party of climate sceptics who are absolutely hopelessly divided on climate change. The Liberals have helped push up power prices by having 13 different energy policies, undermining investment in renewable energy, supporting taxpayer money for new coal plants and backing power privatisation. In fact, just one day after Labor announced the most comprehensive climate change action plan taken to a federal election by a major party in this country's history, the Prime Minister confirmed that the Liberals are proposing to spend taxpayers' dollars on new coal-fired power stations. This is a disgraceful display. After almost six years in government, the Liberals are still making up energy policy on the run, reaching their 13th energy policy in six years—a dangerous, reckless energy policy; an energy policy that adopts coal, which will have the direct effect of undermining Project Marinus and the Battery of the Nation, something all Tasmanians and, indeed, all Australians should beware of. This government doesn't understand renewable energy. It doesn't understand the fact that renewable energy offers a clean future for Australia.