House debates

Thursday, 12 November 2020

Questions without Notice


2:42 pm

Photo of Angie BellAngie Bell (Moncrieff, 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 the Morrison government's strong and decisive leadership in the area of energy technology is lowering energy costs and reducing Australia's emissions? Is the minister aware of any alternative approaches?

2:43 pm

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

I thank the member for Moncrieff for her question. Having been a small-business person before she came into this place, she knows the importance of technology led approaches to bringing down emissions—technology, not taxes. Australia's experience has been that, when new technologies become competitive with high-emitting alternatives, small businesses and households take them up. We are seeing that with renewables. We were seeing investment in renewables in this country 10 times the global average and four times that of places like the United States and Europe.

Our ambition is to be a global leader in low- and zero-emissions technologies. That's our ambition. That's the focus of our Technology Investment Roadmap. That's exactly what we are doing; we are building from our position as a world-leading exporter of energy products into these lower-technology areas. Technologies like hydrogen, soil carbon and carbon capture and storage are all technologies that President-elect Biden is supporting. We know, as the US knows, that the widespread deployment of these technologies—our priority technologies—will substantially reduce emissions or eliminate them in sectors responsible for 90 per cent of the world's emissions. But it will take international collaboration and leadership to achieve this.

Speaking of leadership, this week the member for Hunter has shown some leadership. He has taken the battle for blue-collar workers to the backbench but not before an almighty dust-up on the frontbench, like something out of the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

Hon. Members:

Honourable members interjecting

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

Members on both sides—the minister will resume his seat. I'll just say to the minister for energy that he needs to relate his remarks to the question.

Ms Burney interjecting

The member for Barton needs to let me finish. He was asked about alternative approaches. An alternative approach is not the same as a political commentary on what's happened. The question asked about the government's policy and an alternative approach.

Mr Rob Mitchell interjecting

The Second Deputy Speaker is not helping. I just have to say to the minister that he does need to confine himself to that. Asking for an alternative approach is not asking to give a political commentary on what may or may not have happened inside party rooms or party forums. The minister has the call.

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

I will avoid political commentary and I'll quote directly from 2GB this morning where the member for Hindmarsh said it got a bit—

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

No. The minister will resume his seat. The Leader of the Opposition.