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Cost of Australia's ETS should not be a 'taboo' subject.



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Queensland Senator Ron Boswell told the Senate today that "there should be no `taboo'

on questioning exactly what price we will pay through an Emissions Trading Scheme in jobs, exports and economic health."

"Where so much is at stake, we should be totally informed about the consequences of our legislative actions," Senator Boswell said.

In speaking on the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Amendment Bill today Senator Boswell stated that "the costs to households, workers and business under the proposed green paper are dire to say the least."

"Business went along with the government to start with saying yes we'll work to reduce greenhouse emissions. But they don't seem to have realised the Pandora's Box they opened by choosing that tactic."

He said, "The recent BCA study highlights the dangerous impact of Rudd's emission trading scheme. It would be reckless in the extreme to impose this on the Australian economy."

Senator Boswell signalled that "we should be very careful about becoming partners with New Zealand in an emissions scheme as recently canvassed by Prime Minister Rudd.

"New Zealand, as I understand it, already has a carbon market relationship with Europe. If Australia joined up with New Zealand we could be prematurely brought into the European market through arbitrage and we would be swamped by what happens there because it is

so large and beyond our control," he said.

Senator Boswell also questioned the cost to the "government's own agencies in these areas. Where in the forward estimates does it allocate extra spending to departments to cope with rising costs as a result of an ETS?"

"Of all the issues to decide to take real action on, rather than just posing, Rudd chooses the one with the highest risk to jobs and the economy. There's fuel watch and grocery watch which are merely token reactions to government by populism."

"The one time, the most important time, when it would be wise to watch closely what is happening before acting intemperately is on this emissions trading scheme."

"I hope the business sector and, Ms Ridout, in particular see now the policy Armageddon they have opened up."

"If the Rudd Government's emission trading scheme is not drastically altered, if the litany of liabilities is not comprehensively addressed, then it is Australia who will end up pleading with the East Timorese to take us as guest workers — and not the other way round."

ENDS

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