Page 4868 - Week 11 - Thursday, 21 October 2010

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Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, I draw your attention again to standing order 118(b), which says that, in answering the question, the minister shall not debate the subject to which the question refers. Mr Smyth asked a direct question in relation to the alternatives the government had suggested, and Mr Corbell continues to debate the subject to say what he thinks the Liberal Party’s view might be et cetera. This is not an appropriate answer in accordance with the standing order.

MR SPEAKER: The point of order is upheld. Mr Corbell, stop debating the Liberal Party’s views and answer the specific question, thank you.

MR CORBELL: Mr Speaker, I have not seen the article, so I am not really in a position to comment on it. But what I would say is that the government believes that the deployment of alternative energy sources is absolutely vital for the future energy supply for our city and if we are to make the transition to a low carbon economy.

The types of analyses that the Liberal Party refer to, of course, fail to have regard to the fact that electricity generated from coal does not reflect the full cost of that resource, because it does not have regard to the environmental impact of the use of that. Therefore, it is a false comparison.

MRS DUNNE: A supplementary question, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mrs Dunne.

MRS DUNNE: Minister, do you agree that $400 a tonne or a similar figure is an appropriate price to pay for carbon reduction?

MR CORBELL: The government’s view is that there will be a range of measures that will have to be adopted as we make the transition to a low carbon economy. Some will be relatively low cost and some will be higher cost.

As members of the Liberal Party would know, the government has already announced changes to its feed-in tariff scheme to shift the emphasis to large-scale generation because large-scale generation is inherently more efficient than micro generation. So the government has capped the micro and medium-scale generation categories because of this very reason, reflecting that the relative efficiency of large-scale generation is better than the relative efficiency of micro and medium-scale generation.

The government recognises this issue and we have responded, through the policy settings we have put in place. We are largely—

Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, my question was: does the minister believe that $450 a tonne for abatement is an appropriate figure? He has not even approached that.


MR SPEAKER: On the point of order, Mrs Dunne, I do note that, under standing order 117(c)(i), your question sought an expression of opinion from the minister. I did

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