Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 08 Hansard (Tuesday, 14 August 2018) . . Page.. 2850 ..
an outcome on this but we need the commonwealth to actually come to the table in a spirit of negotiation.
MR PETTERSSON: Can the minister update the Assembly on what the outcome of the federal coalition party room meeting on the NEG this morning may mean for the ACT?
MR RATTENBURY: There have been a number of significant developments in the federal parliament today regarding the national energy guarantee. The first is that a motion was passed yesterday calling for the documents that modelled the alleged price impacts of the national energy guarantee. That motion was passed by the Senate and the documents were due to be produced this morning at 9 am. I am disappointed to report to the Assembly that there are in fact no new documents. The only modelling—so-called modelling, really—that has been made available is a one-page Excel sheet which is claimed to be the basis on which the $550 energy saving is modelled.
Frank Jotzo, from the Australian National University, in a Fairfax article off the back of that, described it as very bad practice to release a major national policy without modelling. He went on to note that even the ACT’s interim emissions target was more detailed, with six accompanying technical reports.
Similarly, there has been the discussion in the federal coalition party room today. I am relying on media reports at this stage, but they do seem to indicate that at least four members of the party room have indicated that they will cross the floor on this; at least four members. I think it now raises the question of whether the Prime Minister will in fact be able to get this legislation through the House of Representatives.
The ACT will be joining a phone link-up with the federal energy minister tonight, at which we expect to have further details on the next steps from the commonwealth government’s perspective.
MR STEEL: Minister, when is the draft legislation planned to be released? How will the ACT constructively engage in the consultation?
MR RATTENBURY: Whilst the ACT did not agree to the NEG in principle on Friday, we did agree that the proposed legislation could be released. I think this is worth while in terms of giving members of the public and key stakeholder groups, as well as state and territory governments, the opportunity to scrutinise the legislation. That release, I presume, will be formalised in the teleconference tonight. Certainly, the ACT will be closely scrutinising that legislation.
The other thing we will continue to do over the coming weeks is seek to engage with the federal government to find a way through on this. I believe a policy outcome is achievable on this but it requires the federal government to actually take on board some of the concerns that have been raised both by state and territory governments and by key commentators and analysts who have looked very closely and carefully at this policy.