Monday, 25 June 2012
Clean Energy Finance Corporation Bill 2012; Second Reading
I rise this evening to make some comments regarding the Clean Energy Finance Corporation Bill 2012. I do so as we count down to the world's biggest carbon tax here in Western Australia. For the untrained eye this might look like legislation to support the government's attempts to improve the environment by reducing carbon emissions. For the more seasoned observer this is a $10 billion payment to the Australian Greens—a payment for keeping the Gillard government in office. It has its origins in the agreement signed by Labor and the Greens as a down payment on installing Labor into government. People may recall it was that agreement, signed in September 2010, that committed the Greens to voting with Labor to ensure supply and opposing any motion of no confidence in the government from any non-Greens member.
I am not sure about global warming, but I am certainly not a sceptic when it comes to acknowledging the political warmth of Labor and the Australian Greens. It is worth just reflecting on page 4, item 6.1(a) of that infamous agreement—it is hardly the Magna Carta, but it has absolutely left an indelible stain on the political landscape of this country. I might just remind people that it was signed by none other than the Prime Minister, the Hon. Julia Gillard; the Hon. Wayne Swan; Senator Bob Brown, when he was in this place; Senator Christine Milne; and Adam Bandt, the member for Melbourne.