Monday, 2 December 2019
Matters of Urgency
I inform the Senate that, at 8.30 am today, 14 proposals were received in accordance with standing order 75. The question of which proposal would be submitted to the Senate was determined by lot. As a result, I inform the Senate that an urgency motion has been received from Senator McCarthy relating to the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme and climate change policy:
Pursuant to standing order 75, I propose that the following matter of urgency be submitted to the Senate for discussion:
That the Senate:
(a) Monday 2 December 2019 marks ten years since the Senate failed to pass legislation for a comprehensive economy wide climate change policy, the Rudd Labor government's Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS);
(b) that implementation of the CPRS would have resulted in Australia's greenhouse gas emissions being between 27 and 81 million tonnes lower in 2020 than currently projected, would have delivered additional cumulative abatement of between 63 and 218 million tonnes over the last 10 years, and would have placed Australian emissions on a sustained and long term downward trajectory;
(c) in addition to Labor senators, the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme bills were supported by Liberal senators Sue Boyce and Judith Troeth;
(d) despite the constructive negotiations engaged in by Mr Malcolm Turnbull and Mr Ian Macfarlane, the Liberals and Nationals opposed the bills under the leadership of Mr Tony Abbott;
(e) the Australian Greens joined with the Liberals and Nationals and also opposed the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme, guaranteeing its defeat;
(2) recognises the decision by the Liberals and Nationals and the Australian Greens to join together and oppose the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme precipitated:
(a) a breakdown in consensus on policy in Australia to address the challenges of climate change;
(b) a decade of policy instability preventing necessary investment in energy infrastructure leading to increases in energy prices and increased emissions; and
(3) calls on all parties to end the political opportunism and work together to agree an enduring solution to the challenges of climate change.
Is the proposal supported?
More than the number of senators required by the standing orders having risen in their places—
I understand that informal arrangements have been made to allocate specific times to each of the speakers in today's debate. With the concurrence of the Senate, I shall ask the clerks to set the clock accordingly.