While Turnbull and the Liberals are attacking Labor for wanting a “massive new carbon tax on electricity,” it turns out that the Climate Change Authority is going to recommend the Liberals do exactly that but not ’til after the election. Allegedly Greg Hunt’s office are “very happy” that the report will be delayed. It would muddy up that scare campaign about Labor’s carbon tax if the punters knew the Libs planned to bring one in too. Labor and the Greens are crying foul, saying the report should be released now.
We are bizarrely reliving 2009. The public don’t want carbon trading. They have voted against it at every opportunity. They don’t want to spend even $2 to neutralize flights, yet both major political parties are now demanding we have one. If the report is suppressed in any way it shows Turnbull and Hunt know the public don’t want a carbon tax, but they’re going to give them one despite that.
The Climate Change Authority was rescued from the Abbott sabre by Al Gore and Clive Palmer. Turnbull and Hunt pointed at it on Sept 22 last year, barely two weeks after the coup, and announced carbon trading and a “cap” could begin in mid 2016. Neither of them have said anything since that suggests they are not intending to bring Cap N Trade in after the election.
Yet again, the climate non-issue for voters is causing turmoil in the Liberal Party. Turnbull is cutting out the core traditional Liberal supporters — and for seemingly no electoral gain. The Delcon / Defcons are furious. I predicted a Turnbull PM would be the seed to split the Liberal party. Maurice Newman warned the same thing and repeated it again recently. Will Turnbull offer any guarantee he will not bring in Cap N Trade in any form?
A report that recommends putting a price on emissions from the electricity sector has been held back by the Climate Change Authority until after the election, prompting calls from Labor and the Greens that it be made public to inform debate.
The independent authority, whose board is now dominated by appointments made last October by Environment Minister Greg Hunt, was to have released its policy options paper for the power industry by the end of April.
The board, though, decided to withhold the report – along with the large Special Review due out by June 30 – until after the election, “assuming it is called for early July,” the authority said on its website.
While Mr Hunt and his department did not intervene, his office was “very happy” that the electricity sector report’s release was delayed, another source said.
A spokesman for Mr Hunt said his office had not seen the reports. He also dismissed the possibility that the government would have withheld a report favouring a wide-ranging carbon price on the eve of an election.
The CCA electricity report assessed the relative merits of different schemes, and found the emissions-intensive version (see “EI” in the following chart from the report) favoured by Labor to be among the cheaper options.