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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 14 Hansard (Thursday, 8 December 2011) . . Page.. 6001 ..


when we look at legislation we look at whether it will work and whether it will achieve what it is designed to achieve. And this legislation will not. If you support renewable energy, you are not going to support a dumb piece of legislation that will not get it done, that will not bring the benefits to the region but will just slug taxpayers.

Then of course he went on with his rant about gas which was very unclear. It was interesting because today we asked the Chief Minister what I thought was a pretty straight question about gas: “What are you going to do? Are you going to build one in Tuggeranong again?” And they could not answer that question, so we do not know. We know that last time they did try and put it in the backyards of Tuggeranong residents; they did try and put it hundreds of metres from homes. They are now going to need to answer that question.

With this legislation this government and the Labor Party want to put the gas-fired power station in the backyards of people in Tuggeranong while putting the solar and the wind in Bombala or Bega or Tumbarumba. Where is the logic in that? We have the Labor Party position exposed. They want a gas-fired power station near you. They want a gas-fired power station close to homes. But when it comes to renewable energy that we will all be paying extra for they are happy if it happens hundreds of kilometres away from Canberra.

So their position is now exposed. They will see any economic benefit that might go with this scheme exported. But the costs of course will be imported to Canberrans. That is why Mr Corbell gets so hot under the collar: the reality has dawned on him that he has created a piece of legislation that does not deliver benefits to the people of the ACT. It delivers burdens to the people of the ACT. It does not benefit the environment. Potentially it will simply benefit local economies in other parts of Australia. Good luck to those local economies. But it is not the job of Canberrans and it is not the job of local representatives in Canberra to actively seek to export capital, export money, export dollars, from Canberra to hundreds of kilometres away instead of seeking to keep economic activity here in the ACT.

It is embarrassing. If the best he can do is say, “If you don’t support my legislation, you don’t support the environment” and “If you don’t support my legislation, you don’t support solar,” everyone will see what a ridiculous argument that is. But we see it there exposed: gas-fired power station in your backyard; solar and wind off in the nether, 300 kilometres away, in Eden, in Tumbarumba, and in other parts many hundreds of kilometres away from Canberra.

We will support legislation that is sensible and sound. We will support policies that do good for the environment while minimising the cost to Canberrans. This does none of that—and, to boot, it sees the economic activity going elsewhere so that other states can emit more. We do not believe that is worthy of our support.

Amendments agreed to.


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