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Oakes airs out Abbott

5 October, 2009

In what was first looking to be a usual ‘yawn-it’s-Sunday-Laurie-and-Tony-are-playing-hide-the-leadership-sausage’, Laurie Oakes nailed Tony Abbott on his position on climate change, or rather, his decision to push for an amended ETS despite being a sceptic.

Laurie quotes Abbott in a Victorian paper:

LO: Quote – “the argument on climate change is absolute crap,” he said.’ Is it absolute crap?

TA: But then I went on to say –

LO: Oh yes you went on to say and I’ll quote the paper.  You said, “However, the politics of this are tough for us. 80% of people believe climate change is a real and present danger.” You think its crap but you’re doing this to humour the voters?

As entertainingly uncomfortable as it might be to watch an Abbott squirm and then wriggle off the hook, the interview did raise an interesting point about the Liberal Party’s position to climate change and the Emissions Trading Scheme. Abbott and Turnbull are, of course, pushing for a position that will ‘save jobs in agriculture’ but also that is on par with the US’ ETS. The question is, is just being “on par” with the US good enough? Is it not better to demonstrate global leadership – perhaps like Japanese PM Hatoyama did last week in stating Japan’s emission reduction targets – and become a leader in green industries?

I’ll admit this is an old argument, but the issue gets meatier when the prospect of requiring imports to also comply with the strict standards, and whether this would simply become a blatant non-tariff barrier to trade and, given Australia’s relatively small scale in the global economy, simply mean less producers would be willing (or able) to sell in Australia?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 5 October, 2009 3:48 pm

    playing-hide-the-leadership-sausage…. lol

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