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softly, softly « Previous | |Next »
July 18, 2008

The greenhouse mafia in action and the commonwealth government's response:

Industrylobby.jpg Moir

So it is easy to see what the politics of emissions trading is all about. The Green paper may say all the right things about the urgency of the climate change problem, but The Rudd Government's politics is basically about industry protection and selling out to the heavy polluters. It's more of less an embrace of the Shergold position under the Howard regime.

That position was primarily about cushioning the effects of the carbon price on industry to delay the desired change in behaviour to reduce emissions and shift to a low-carbon economy. The big changes would be put off way into the future.

The next step in backflipping comes with the targets . The Rudd Government is still talking in terms of a 60% reduction in carbon emissions by 2050. So what will it be for 2020? A 10% reduction? The assumption here is that carbon capture and storage will be economic because renewables such as solar, geothermal power and wind are far too expensive. To prevent the latter from falling in price rapidly, and so making carbon capture and storage uneconomic, the price of carbon needs to be kept low, so that the renewables remain uneconomic.

Coal must rule. Hence all the threats to cut investment, abolish jobs, shift plants offshore, etc etc.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 8:55 AM | | Comments (8)
Comments

Comments

The ALP Right has no love for their Geeens. They are passionate in their hatred of their enemy.

The big fight with the Greens will be over the targets for emission reduction.

The more its business as suaul on emissions reduction the more the leakage of the ALP's inner city left vote to the Greens.

Gary,
Perhaps the government is anticipating the key issue in peoples minds running up to the next election will be job security. Now then isn't the time to get off side with industry. They are the ones who lay off big numbers and make the headlines.
Businesses with large work force liabilities will be positioning themselves to ride out the storm. Qantas has announced major job losses today and has shelved plans to hire over the next couple of years. Many others will follow over the next couple of months.

Les,
The debate in the media is framed entirely around costs and cash compensation, instead of the opportunities for transformation of the energy sector. The latter means the creation of new jobs as it involves embracing the smart, renewable technologies and the development of new industries built upon these technologies.

We are starting on the back foot as the solar technologies have been exported to the US and Spain under Howard and Rudd, and the solar farms are being built there.

The standard argument in the media and Canberra is that it creating these new industries and jobs is politically unacceptable and won’t pass muster with the electorate. It's not a very persuasive argument, given the big response to the solar panels rebate.

P.S.S,
The debate going around small business at the moment is whether it will be tight for 3 or 5 years. Lots of people are looking to get out. Many will just shut the doors. Its bad timing for a hard line ETS.

Les
a hardline Emissions Trading Scheme? What are you referring to?

$5 a ton would be better to get the system up and running and then have a relook at it in 2 years.
The same as these unreal expectations of 60% reductions by 2050 is far too ambitious. Better to of made it 20% and got everybody on board.
But then again. Nothing like a good recession to cut carbon emissions

Les,
you are whistling in the wind. Sydney, Melbourne etc, produce the greatest proportion of its greenhouse emissions from power generation. Almost 80 per cent of Sydney's emissions come from electricity supplied to homes and businesses, and less than 10 per cent from transport.

So there is a need to find a different and better way to produce electricity through low carbon sources. Price and the market is the way to do that. Otherwise nothing will happen.

You seeem to have a mistrust of markets.

I see that business is running a campaign for a very soft approach to emissions trading. All and sundry---- liquidified natural gas, petriol refinery, aviation, paper production etc---are all catching a flight to Canberra with their hand out wanting compensation, assistance or exclusion.

The energy companies are calling for the removal of caps on retail sale of energy put on by the state governments. They argue that these caps sneed to be removed so that they can pass through carbon costs to consumers.