Page 271 - Week 01 - Thursday, 27 February 2014

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The amendment bill moved by the government today is part of an integrated strategy to meet the challenge presented by climate change by deeply cutting the territory’s greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with our legislated targets. The government’s comprehensive economic modelling demonstrates that its greenhouse gas reduction targets are achievable and that its strategy is affordable.

The government’s core policy mechanism, using a feed-in tariff and reverse auction process, has been independently reviewed and found to be effective at delivering renewables at the lowest possible cost. We will extend this mechanism to future capacity releases while maximising local economic development benefits and community engagement outcomes.

With the solar auction complete, and with Australia’s largest solar farm under construction, the ACT government has demonstrated how smart policies can deliver nation-leading outcomes. With the amendment bill introduced today, our community can slash our greenhouse gas emissions while positioning our economy to benefit from a global renewable energy revolution, as an internationally recognised centre for renewable energy innovation and investment. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Ms Lawder) adjourned to the next sitting.

Rail Safety National Law (ACT) Bill 2014

Mr Corbell, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations and Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development) (11.33): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

I am pleased to introduce the Rail Safety National Law (ACT) Bill 2014 into the Assembly today. The bill, which provides for the adoption of a rail safety national law in the ACT, introduces a legislative framework for rail safety which does not exist in the ACT at present. Until the introduction of an interstate standard rail track gauge across Australia, rail operators working across multiple jurisdictions were faced with having to deal with as many as three different rail track gauges. The lack of uniformity in the gauges added greatly to the complexity and cost of rail operations. Rail regulation has a similar history with all jurisdictions regulating their railways differently.

The national partnership agreement to deliver a seamless national economy identified rail safety regulation as a competition reform priority. The commonwealth and the states and territories recognised that they had a mutual interest in improving outcomes in rail safety regulation and investigation and have worked together to achieve this

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