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Government to seek business, environment and non-government organisations' views on climate change

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THE HON WAYNE SWAN MP Deputy Prime Minister Treasurer

THE HON GREG COMBET AM MP Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency

THE HON MARTIN FERGUSON AM MP Minister for Resources and Energy


Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

SENATOR THE HON JOE LUDWIG Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry



The Government will establish two roundtables to engage the business community, environment and non-government organisations on its climate change policies.

These roundtables will play an important role providing advice to the Government on the issues surrounding climate change.

The discussions at the roundtables will focus on the introduction of a carbon price into the economy, particularly the need to give businesses certainty to invest in low-pollution technologies, and may also cover a range of other climate change measures.

The roundtables will help inform the positions that the Government takes to the newly formed Multi-Party Climate Change Committee.

The Gillard Government has a clear vision for a sustainable economy, that improves living standards while preserving the environment and bringing our communities together. An important part of this vision is managing a steady transformation to a low-pollution economy.

A carbon price is a major economic and environmental reform that will create an incentive to reduce pollution, and drive investment in renewable energy and low-emission technologies.

A carbon price will also provide certainty for business investment, and ensure the long-term competitiveness of our economy.

Without a carbon price, business must build more risk into investment calculations, with the result that investment will be more expensive than it needs to be, leading to less investment and fewer jobs.

If we are to remain internationally competitive over the long term, our industries must become less carbon intensive. The best way of doing this is by establishing a carbon price in the economy.

The simple fact is that the longer we delay a carbon price, the sharper the adjustment that will be required and the greater the long-term economic cost, which is why the business community is calling for this reform to be made.

The Business Roundtable will also discuss how the Government’s climate change policies intersect with our other economic policies including tax reform.

The Business Roundtable will be co-chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer, Wayne Swan, and the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet.

The Minister for Resources and Energy, Martin Ferguson, will also be a member.

The Environment and Non-Governmental Organisation Roundtable will be co-chaired by the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Greg Combet, and the Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, Tony Burke.

The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Joe Ludwig, will also be a member.

The Government will announce the full composition of these two roundtables in the coming weeks, following discussions with leaders of the business, union, environment and non-government sectors.

The intention will be for these roundtables to meet monthly, or as required.


27 September 2010

Contact: Adam Collins (Treasurer) 0408 529 633

Tim Fitzsimmons (Minister Combet) 0447 202 469

Fiona Scott (Minister Ferguson) 0457 542 330

Andrew Bourke (Minister Burke) 0400 117 570

Sarah Cosson (Minister Ludwig) 0423 823 843