Page 2312 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

As we move into the future of energy production, I am convinced that the ACT will be able to continue investing in renewable energy to the benefit of our community, and the Australian community as well. This reduction in emissions will be helped not only though investment in wind, solar and other renewable energy technologies but through innovation which reduces the need for other forms of fossil fuels.

To sum up, I am very proud of the work which is being done by the ACT government to reduce emissions and progress investment in the renewable sector. The attacks on the sector by the federal government are worrying, and states and territories, along with the ACT, need to continue to work towards emission reductions. With that I commend the motion.

MR BARR (Molonglo—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Urban Renewal and Minister for Tourism and Events) (11.57): The need to move to smarter, lower polluting and more distributed energy sources is driving a revolution in the energy industry, and it will certainly unlock massive levels of investment over the next decade. Our city and our country need to build on our strengths and to lead innovation to benefit from the new jobs and export opportunities that this investment is going to deliver.

This morning I would like to speak about the significant economic benefits gained by the territory through the first wind auction and the broader benefits of continued renewable energy sector growth for businesses and education in the territory. First, Madam Deputy Speaker, your motion reflects that, at a time when the Prime Minster and his government have taken an axe to effective action on climate change and support for renewables, here in Canberra the ACT government is moving forward with the nation’s most ambitious agenda of carbon reduction and energy change.

The commonwealth has slashed the national 2020 renewable energy target from 41 to 33 terawatt hours. It has repealed the carbon price which saw, for the first time in the nation’s history, a reversal in growth of power station emissions. It has tried to abolish or hobble both the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. And as we have heard, the Prime Minister has claimed that coal “is good for humanity” whilst slamming wind energy as being “offensive”.

At every opportunity, whilst the world has been going forward in leaps and bounds towards a cleaner energy future, the Liberal Party and the Abbott Liberal government have been going backwards, squandering this exceptional opportunity to lead innovation, create new jobs and drive investment. Our country is being left behind by the rest of the world’s emission reduction initiatives.

Just this week President Obama issued new landmark regulations designed to shift the US power industry away from global warming inducing fossil fuels. His new regulations, administered by the US Environmental Protection Agency, will limit the carbon dioxide emissions that can be released by that nation’s power plants. Under the new rules American states will have until 2018 to tell the EPA how they plan to meet individual emission reduction targets. Overall the rule aims to achieve a 32 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector on 2005 levels by 2030.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video