Nov 14, 2006

Howard Government cannot be trusted on climate change

Howard Government cannot be trusted on climate change

MEDIA RELEASE – ANTHONY ALBANESE MP

14 November 2006

Addressing climate change requires immediate action based on a solid policy framework, not insincere daily back-flips and a taskforce to tell the electorate what it already knows.

Establishing a taskforce is a duplicitous stalling tactic, demonstrating the Howard Government cannot be trusted on climate change.

It is widely accepted that emissions trading will help Australia’s economy meet the challenge of climate change and allow Australia to participate in a booming international clean energy market with homegrown technologies that will create jobs in regional and urban Australia.

The global carbon trading market is worth $US30 billion in 2006.

Every month that goes by means more lost revenue for Australian business and farmers.

John Howard has ignored climate change for 10 years and has previously rejected plans to establish an emissions trading scheme.

Between 1998 and 2003, the Howard Government had high level reports, Ministerial Councils and even a Cabinet submission to establish a national emissions trading scheme, but all were rejected because climate change sceptics and sectional interests control the Howard Government’s climate policy.

After 10 years of stalling and denial, John Howard’s is clearly not committed to avoiding dangerous climate change.

John Howard has been dragged kicking and screaming to acknowledge the issue of climate change.

John Howard’s lack of commitment over climate change meant Australia’s greenhouse emissions rose 25.1% between 1990 and 2004 (when land use changes are excluded), and Australia still has the highest per capita greenhouse emissions in the world.

John Howard must ratify Kyoto and claim a seat at the table where the 165 countries that have ratified Kyoto are making practical reforms to the economic mechanisms which will drive reductions in emissions for many years.