House debates

Thursday, 29 October 2020

Questions without Notice

Climate Change

2:34 pm

Photo of Terry YoungTerry Young (Longman, Liberal National Party) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction. Will the minister update the House on how Australia's unique plan to support new and emerging technologies will reduce emissions both in Australia and globally while strengthening our economy? Is the minister aware of any alternative approaches?

Photo of Angus TaylorAngus Taylor (Hume, Liberal Party, Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction) Share this | | Hansard source

I thank the member for Longman for his question. As a former small business owner he knows how important affordable, reliable energy is for small businesses in this country. He also knows that the key to emissions reduction, to a pathway to emissions reduction, is the development and deployment of new and emerging technologies—that means technology, not taxation. Australia's experience has been that when new technologies become economically competitive then they are rapidly adopted by Australian businesses and households. We are seeing that happen firsthand right now with the adoption of renewables in Australia 10 times the global average—four times higher than China, Japan, the US and Europe.

We are now focused on unlocking new technologies that will help us to bring down emissions and address the challenges of those new technologies like firming of renewables. This is all about setting practical goals for those new technologies, like the goal of $900 per tonne for low-emissions steel.

As we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic a plan to strengthen the economy, as we are bringing down our emissions, is more important than ever. But it's not clear that those opposite all agree. We saw a perfect example of that in this place earlier today when the member for Hindmarsh couldn't name a single Labor energy policy in a 20 minute speech—not a single Labor energy policy. There was no plan for gas. There was no plan for reliable, affordable energy. There was no plan for a 2030 target. There was no plan to stay in the Paris Agreement.

This week we saw the AWU, the CFMEU and 32 Labor MPs with the member for Hindmarsh in their sights. They showed up at an event on Tuesday night where we saw a plan laid out for Labor. I'm not sure that the member for Hindmarsh got there, but I will lay it out for him now. A plan for gas complementing renewables. A plan for coal. A plan for technology and industry. That's a great plan. It's aligned with our plan. We've seen more constructive policy from the CFMEU and the AWU this week than we've seen from the member for Hindmarsh in seven years as shadow minister. While those opposite fight amongst themselves we're getting on with the job.

Ms Burney interjecting

Photo of Tony SmithTony Smith (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Barton is warned.