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Thursday, 14 February 2008
Page: 388


Mr MELHAM (2:43 PM) —My question is to the Treasurer. Can the Treasurer update the House on the work Treasury is undertaking on the economics of climate change?


Mr SWAN (Treasurer) —I thank the member for his question. This government sees climate change as one of the greatest intergenerational challenges that this country faces. To enhance our understanding of climate change, the Australian Treasury is undertaking detailed modelling of the macroeconomic impacts of emissions reductions. It is very important work. This modelling will be a very important part in our determinations of an emissions trading system. The Treasury is consulting broadly with international and domestic experts in developing modelling assumptions. This modelling work is expected to be complete by mid-June.

In designing the government’s response to climate change, the Australian government will draw on a range of work, including this modelling from Treasury, independent academic analysis by Professor Garnaut and other analysis from here and abroad. We on this side of the House recognise the costs of climate change and that the costs of inaction are far greater than the costs of action. That is why we will take an evidence based approach to finding solutions for the long term. It is very important. Australia now has a government that recognises the important implications of climate change and is addressing them.