Page 4304 - Week 14 - Wednesday, 27 November 2013

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The types of steps we are taking include measures like the energy efficiency program, the energy efficiency cost of living reduction scheme, a scheme opposed by those opposite, a scheme that delivers savings per household off their electricity bill of approximately $300—opposed by the Liberal Party. The Liberal Party is not interested in saving households money on their electricity bills, let alone reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Of course, there are measures like the implementation of the solar auction program which is, right now, seeing the development of the largest solar power plant yet to be developed in Australia, right here in the ACT, right here in Mr Gentleman’s electorate, which is going to deliver emissions savings equivalent to the production out of households of about 4½ thousand Canberra households.

These are the types of measures that Canberrans surveyed overwhelmingly support. We are not just talking about 60 or 70 per cent; we are talking about 80 or 90 per cent of those Canberrans surveyed supporting these types of measures. The lesson here for those opposite who continue to assert that this is not the business of the ACT government is to think again and listen to the people of Canberra and their aspirations for a more sustainable city.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Wall.

MR WALL: Minister, how many survey participants were supportive of large-scale solar generation being constructed opposite residential areas?

MR CORBELL: That particular matter was not surveyed. It was not surveyed, and nor should it be, because issues about location are appropriately dealt with through the Planning and Development Act. That is what that law is there for. We have a law that spells out how land should be used and how those proposals should be assessed. Those opposite seem to think that when it is convenient the law should be ignored. “Let’s just throw the Planning and Development Act out the window. Let’s just throw the territory plan out the window. When it doesn’t suit us, the law doesn’t apply.” Well, I am sorry—the law does apply. The Planning and Development Act applies. The territory plan applies. Solar farm proposals will be assessed in accordance with the territory plan. They will be assessed in accordance with the Planning and Development Act. All development proposals in this city should be treated equally and fairly under the law, and that is the way these matters will be handled.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Coe.

MR COE: Minister, how much did the government spend on the survey, and do you agree that the federal government has a mandate to repeal the carbon tax?

MR CORBELL: In relation to the cost of the survey, I am happy to take the question on notice and provide an answer to the member. In relation to the issue of the carbon tax, whilst it is clearly the case that Mr Abbott is prepared to implement a commitment he has made to the Australian community to repeal the carbon tax, my Labor colleagues, representing the views of those who voted for them to maintain a price on carbon and—

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