For the record: Labor Senators defending the Clean Energy package – 2013-14

Ensuring each Bill is considered | Clean Energy Finance Corporation abolition Bill | Climate Change Authority abolition Bill

For the record, here are speeches by Labor Senators in December 2013 and February 2014 resisting Tony Abbott’s unilateral surrender of Australia’s defences against climate change; the incredible vandalism of destroying all the architecture of Labor’s measures to promote green energy; and the arrogance and lack of accountability of trying to do this without even having a proper debate on multiple Bills introduced together.

In a later post we’ll put up links to the next round of the fight in Australia’s Parliament over climate action – including a roll call of shame for the Liberal, National and some coss-bench Senators who voted against our nation’s future.

Ensuring each Bill is considered properly

Penny Wong

The opposition is not going to be party to the whole of the architecture that has been established by this parliament to address climate change being swept away in one fell swoop following  no real examination of the consequences. The opposition have made our position very clear. We do not support doing nothing on climate change, and that is the government’s position. 

Doug Cameron with interjection and continued

I am afraid the coalition do not want to position the Australian economy to a cleaner and more energy-efficient future. They want to take us back to a position where we are solely reliant on carbon-intensive industries. 

Clean Energy Finance Corporation abolition bill

Senator Pratt Senator Urquhart | Senator Lines | Senator Bilyk | Senator Polley | Senator Cameron | Senator Stephens | Senator Sterle | Senator Lundy |

Louise Pratt

The coalition want to abolish the Clean Energy Finance Corporation for purely political reasons, with no logic and just negativity.

Anne Urquhart and continued

 I hope those opposite can put aside their ideological opposition to government co-financing and see the potential of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation.

Sue Lines

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation delivers real and tangible change. The CEFC has financed innovative projects across our economy inboth cities and regional areas.

Catryna Bilyk

The Clean Energy Finance Corporration is performing exactly the way it was intended to. What makes this move to abolish the Clean Energy Finance Corporation even more bizarre is that it is making a profit.

Helen Polley

The Abbott government plans to drag Australia backwards and make us significantly less competitive in the emerging 21st century markets of renewable and cleaner energy technologies.

Doug Cameron

For the life of me I cannot understand why the National Party, which purports to represent farming communities, would not treat this seriously.

Ursula Stephens

We are talking about serious investment in a constructive portfolio of investment projects that are seriously targeted at creating our clean energy future.

Glenn Sterle and continued

How can the government ignore these results? Simply because they do not believe in the science and they refuse to understand the link between better environmental management and what that can do for industry and business productivity.

Kate Lundy

This is another example of a government that is not willing to invest in the future.

Climate Change Authority abolition Bill

Senator Pratt | Senator Urquhart | Senator Gallacher | Senator Stephens | Senator Polley | Senator Kim Carr | Senator Sterle | Senator Moore | Senator Lundy | Senator Thorp | Senator Brown | Senator Dastyari | Senator McEwen

Louise Pratt

Labor created the Climate Change Authority as an independent institution so it could give independent expert advice on emissions reductions targets and the scope of emissions reductions. These very jobs that the Climate Change Authority is doing should actually be applied to the coalition’s direct action policy too. But what do the coalition want in contrast? They want no scrutiny at all.

Anne Urquhart

The new coalition government’s approach is to ditch the clean energy mechanism and ditch the advisers. Their approach is like putting your head under a pillow and screaming, ‘It’s just too hard.’

At present, the independent Climate Change Authority performs five clear roles for government: to provide recommendations on future pollution caps; to make recommendations on the indicative national trajectories and long-term emissions budgets; to provide independent advice on the progress being made to reduce Australia’s emissions to meet national targets; to conduct regular reviews of the carbon pricing mechanism; and, to conduct reviews of and make recommendations on the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting System, the renewable energy target and Carbon Farming Initiative.

The authority’s advice is valuable whether you want to pursue a market based mechanism, as we do, or a command and control policy, as advocated by the new coalition government.

  Alex Gallacher and continued

The money people of the world, the people who have been reinsuring risk for centuries, think that climate change is real, climate change is here—’it’s in our DNA’—and they underwrite the risks which have been clearly identified.

Ursula Stephens

In November, the newly re-formed Climate Council released a landmark report called Be prepared: climate change and the Australian bushfire threat, which highlighted the demonstrable connection between climate change and the duration and severity of Australian bushfires. The reason today’s debate is so important is that this government is burning up the means that we had to be prepared.

Helen Polley

 every day we see new advancements in renewable and cleaner energy technologies in this country, and it is because of the work that Labor did; it was what we did when we were in government

Kim Carr

What this government fails to grasp is the unbreakable link between action on climate change and the need to modernise manufacturing

Glenn Sterle

If the market is factoring in climate change—that is, if the insurers are factoring increasingly extreme weather events into their premiums—then that is something that an economic rationalist should be able to accept. You would not think it was that hard.

Claire Moore

we must have the space, the respect and the ability to have strong independent advice

Kate Lundy 

Mr Abbott’s direct action policy removes a legal cap on pollution, giving free rein for organisations to choke the atmosphere with greenhouse gases. Instead of making them pay for this pollution, he will be giving these same organisations billions of taxpayer dollars as part of his carbon slush fund.

Lin Thorp 

 The coalition’s attempt to abolish the Climate Change Authority indicates that they will do anything to ensure that there is no independent analysis and scrutiny of their ‘direct action plan’

 Carol Brown

The coalition have such a low regard for science that they do not even have a science minister. The coalition do not like what the Climate Change Authority has to say, so they are trying to shut it down.

Sam Dastyari

There are plenty of self-interested stakeholders out there, especially those who would benefit from government inaction. Caving into these pressures is not the mark of strong leadership

Anne McEwen 

I am happy to take the advice of those who know what they are talking about. I am happy to take that advice because I do not want to see our nation riven by bushfires and floods or our crops or industries devastated.

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