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Rudd's ETS certainty: His scheme will cost tens of thousands of jobs.

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The Hon Andrew Robb AO MP Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and COAG and Shadow Minister Assisting the Leader on Emissions Trading Design

The Hon Ian Macfarlane MP Shadow Minister for Energy and Resources

The brutal findings of research released today, combined with the Government’s one-year delay on the start of their emissions trading scheme, confirms the need to put back any vote on legislation until the impact of the rushed scheme is fully analysed and the results of Copenhagen are known.

10,000 jobs will be lost and 16 coal mines in NSW and Queensland will close prematurely within the first 10 years of the Rudd Government’s emissions trading scheme according to independent research released today.

The research was conducted for the Australian Coal Association by leading economic researchers ACIL Tasman.

The research found that by 2015 twelve mines will close and 7,600 jobs will be lost. This is totally unacceptable.

“The Government’s proposal is a source of massive uncertainty and risk. People are worried about their jobs in the current economic climate and the Government’s pig-headed insistence on this flawed scheme is only making things worse,” said the Opposition Spokesman on Emissions Trading Design, the Hon. Andrew Robb AO MP.

“The research released today is just the latest in a series of revelations that show that tens of thousands of jobs will be lost with no environmental benefit if the flawed scheme is forced through.”

“The devastating impact of Mr Rudd’s reckless approach to the ETS has been further exposed,” Shadow Minister for Energy and Resources Ian Macfarlane said.

“At a time when the resources sector has already been hit hard by the global financial downturn Mr Rudd’s recklessness is undercutting thousands of jobs and risking investment.

“Without a fair assessment of the Australian coal industry and a significant investment in new technologies for cleaner base load power the Rudd Labor Government is also condemning Australians to a future of unreliable electricity supply that will come at a substantially greater cost.”

“The Government should be conducting new modelling and analysis of the effects of this policy on jobs, regions and the transition period and what effect the global financial crisis has had on the Government’s assumptions. The Government has done none of this work,” said Andrew Robb.

“The impact on local communities of the twenty year transitional period has been deliberately avoided.

“They have not even analysed whether their own Emissions Trading Scheme is the best way to go.

“The current one year delay is only a stay of execution for Australian companies and Australian jobs.

“The delay gives the Government time to refer the scheme to the Productivity Commission, as recommended by an independent report to the Coalition last week, and consider various scenarios including the impact on jobs if China, India and other competitors don’t introduce a scheme in the next 15 - 20 years, and other alternatives in light of the global financial crisis and the outcome of Copenhagen.

“It would be irresponsible to rush this deeply flawed scheme through Parliament by the end of June. We can have the debate after the Copenhagen meeting at the end of the year, with all the information on the table, without affecting Mr Rudd’s new start date.

“Penny Wong says her scheme provides certainty. The only certainty it provides is the certainty of job losses.

“As I have been saying, and it has been further confirmed today, the Government’s emissions trading policy will cost jobs, kill investment and deliver little, if any, reduction in CO2 emissions.”

The following Labor MPs represent seats that have a strong coal industry presence in NSW and Queensland. Their silence is deafening.

James Bidgood (Dawson, includes Mackay)

Sharon Bird (Cunningham, includes Wollongong)

Joel Fitzgibbon (Hunter, includes the Hunter Valley)

Sharon Grierson (Newcastle, includes Newcastle)

Kirsten Livermore (Capricornia, includes Rockhampton) and

Chris Trevor (Flynn, includes Gladstone