Question time and carbon pricing

Question time and carbon pricing

As well as opposing legislative action on climate change from 2009 on (when Tony Abbott seized the Liberal leadership), Tony Abbott and his gang kept up a campaign of deception and distraction on carbon pricing in Question Time and in public.

We will be adding here some "highlights" from Question Time to provide more convenient access to some of the most outrageous claims and deceptions, rather than people having to search through the original parliamentary records.


Tuvalu sinking into the ocean is not a joke | 

Tuvalu sinking into the ocean is not a joke

Nice stuff from Tony Abbott and from former lawyer against asbestos victims, Julie Bishop: 

House of Representatives, 9 February 2012

Ms JULIE BISHOP (CurtinDeputy Leader of the Opposition) (14:09): My question is to the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Will the Minister for Foreign Affairs advise the House of one single country—just one will do—with an economy-wide carbon tax greater than the Australian carbon tax, set at $23 per tonne and going up to $131 per tonne?

Opposition members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Order! The honourable the Minister for Foreign Affairs will commence his answer once the House is silent. The minister has the call.

Mr RUDD (GriffithMinister for Foreign Affairs) (14:10): I thank the Deputy Leader of the Opposition for her question. I did notice that once the question had been asked there was an interjection, by the Leader of the Opposition, I understand, mockingly saying 'Tuvalu, but it is sinking.' On the question of climate change, for the people of Tuvalu, the people of Kiribati, for the people in the climate change small island states, this is not a joke.

Ms Julie Bishop: I rise on a point of order. On relevance, the Prime Minister is talking about Tuvalu. It does not have a carbon tax. I have asked him to name one single country—

The SPEAKER: Order! The deputy leader will resume her seat. The minister will resume his answer and will give an answer that is directly relevant.

Mr RUDD: I was simply reflecting upon the impact of that interjection on people who are facing the hard edge of climate change realities around the world: the disappearance of their countries. On the question posed by the Deputy Leader of the Opposition I make the following observations. I am advised that a number of countries have carbon prices higher than Australia's—a proposed price. For example, Norway's carbon tax on petrol is up to A$60; Switzerland's carbon tax on certain fossil fuels is around A$36; and in Canada the province of British Columbia has a carbon tax that will increase to around $28 per tonne in July 2012.

I find it remarkable that those opposite have difficulty confronting facts in response to a question. I can repeat those three if they wish, but I will go on. The United Kingdom has introduced a price—

Honourable members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Minister, if you would hold for a moment. All honourable members have had the opportunity of participation in relation to the minister's response. Everyone will now remain silent so we can all listen to the words articulated by the Minister for Foreign Affairs. The minister has the call.

Mr RUDD: Thank you for your guidance and assistance, Mr Speaker. In this generally shared response, let me go on to the next point I was going to make, which is that the United Kingdom has introduced a price floor for the electricity generating sector to provide incentives for investment. Their target price floor is around $24 for the year 2013-14. Furthermore, I advise the House that we have previously seen the EU price sit above 20 euros for extended periods of time for most of the period between 2005 and 2008, and the price has rarely dropped between—

Opposition members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Order! Honourable members on my left will remain completely silent for the duration of the minister's answer. Anyone who does not will join the honourable member for Longman.

Mr RUDD: The price has rarely dropped below 20 euros and at times it has gone above 30 euros. But I say to honourable members opposite that, given that they supposedly represent the party of business and markets, if they were to begin to look at the projections forward from market advisory services, for example, the Bloomberg New Energy Finance report of December last year, that report estimated that the EU carbon price is likely to be around 24.7 euros by the year 2015. I say to those opposite that if they are asking questions about carbon price, they in fact represent the realities of what is occurring around the world. It contrasts with a $48 billion plan, the so-called 'direct action plan', unfunded and uncosted, by those opposite. (Time expired)

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