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Tuesday, 8 November 2011
Page: 8469

Senator McKENZIE (Victoria) (10:07): I think the modelling done by the dairy industry actually suggests that individual dairy farmers at the farm gate will be impacted to the tune of between $5,000 and $7,000 per family per farm, because it is energy intensive farming. It is not that the carbon tax is being applied to the act of farming; it is the electricity that farmers have to use to get the milk out of the cows, basically, and into the trucks and off to the processor and then to take the moisture out of it and get it onto the docks as one of our major exports, particularly in my home state of Victoria. I am not sure whether the food and foundries program deals with the socioeconomic impacts that the carbon tax will have on dairy farming communities, particularly, for instance, in South Gippsland, where I come from.

Given that, and the industry itself has been a loud advocate, I would like to draw the minister's attention to division 5 and the Productivity Commission inquiries that are outlined that will have a look at particular industries and aspects of our economy that may be adversely affected, particularly those industries that are emissions intensive and trade exposed. I would argue, and so would the industry and so, I am sure, would the VFF and the NFF, that dairy is such an industry. Is there any provision within any of the bills for the impact of the tax on this industry to be reviewed prior to 30 June 2015, which seems to be, from my reading, the first point at which this can be looked at?