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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 1 Hansard (26 February) . . Page.. 161..


Mr Doszpot: Are you saying you do not want to be associated with them? Is that what you are saying?

Mr Hanson: Madam Deputy Speaker, on a point of order. Mr Barr has just said that we refer to members on our side as "The Muppet Show". I would say that that would be unparliamentary and I would ask them to withdraw those comments.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: I think that as a general rule the standing orders state that one should address members by their name or, if you want to talk in general, you should refer to the opposition, to the government or to the crossbenches, if it is the crossbenches you are talking about. So I would prefer that members did adhere to that for the rest of the debate. Thank you very much. Mr Rattenbury.

MR RATTENBURY: Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker, and I thank Ms Berry for introducing this motion, which focuses on the economy, employment and infrastructure opportunities in the ACT. I have said before that the Greens agree that a strong local economy is important for our present and future prosperity. We have a particular interest, of course, in how we can successfully transition to a low emission green economy.

This means maintaining our success, happiness and productivity as a society while significantly reducing the cost we have on our natural environment. It is simply not sustainable or logical to pretend that our prosperity depends on destroying our natural environment and depleting our natural resources, pushing the planet towards irreversible tipping points and stealing a sustainable future from generations to come.

Our economy is a subset of the environment, not the reverse. The Greens have a view that taking environmental sustainability seriously goes hand in hand with a sustainable economy. It leads to new jobs, to new industries, and to economic creativity and prosperity. There are many ways to develop the green economy. These are becoming more refined as more jurisdictions embrace them. The United Nations has placed a specific focus on green economy, green growth and low carbon and climate resilient policy instruments in recent years in response to the global financial crisis of 2008.

The feed-in tariff is an example of action that merges the environment and the economy. Feed-in tariffs have driven the uptake of renewable energy. They have also driven the expansion of the renewable energy industry. Another example is labour market policies which support training and support people transitioning from old industries like fossil fuels into green industries such as renewable energy.

There has been some discussion about public service job cuts this morning. Ms Berry has noted in her motion that there are set to be significant job cuts in the ACT. Mr Hanson was very animated about this. When it comes to the topic of the amendment, I think I am actually going to prefer the language that Ms Berry put forward, because I note she simply observes that there will be 12,000 job cuts from the Australian public service. She has not actually ascribed them to any political party. Perhaps we can just settle on the fact, because I think this is going to be a long-held topic in this place and people are going to argue about it for a long time.


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