Saturday, July 26, 2008

Opposition 'ducking and weaving' on emissions trading

ABC News Online, Posted 10 minutes ago

The Federal Government has taken a fresh swipe over apparent tensions within the Opposition on emissions trading.

A clarification of the Opposition's stance on climate change will be near the top of the agenda when Coalition MPs meet in Canberra this week.

This morning Opposition treasury spokesman Malcolm Turnbull denied that he and Opposition leader Brendan Nelson had different positions on the issue.

"Whatever emerges from the party room meetings we'll see a Liberal Party that is united and committed to a common goal."

But Climate Change Minister Penny Wong says it is time the Opposition clearly stated its position.

"What we do know is Australians want responsible action taken on climate change, that is what the Rudd Government is committed to, that's what we're focussed on," she said.

"Unfortunately what we see from the Liberal Opposition is more ducking and weaving, seeking to avoid taking yet again these type of decisions when it comes to climate change."

Earlier today, Opposition environment spokesman Greg Hunt told ABC1's Insiders there were good reasons to review their policy.

"Well there's a green paper which the Government has put out and two things come out of that green paper," he said.

"Firstly, they've managed to mess up the clean energy sector and what that means is that the clean burning LPG sector for cars, the cleanest of the auto fuels, is about to be plunged into a high tax regime. The clean burning LNG sector which is the base fuel which we export to China and to other developing countries may be taxed out of existence.

"And what we've seen is an incapacity to manage the task of climate change and of clean energy and the Australian economy.

"That's why we're reviewing our response to this quite disastrous beginning."

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