THE future of thousands of Callide and Dawson valley coal mining jobs and the district’s strong beef industry could be decided by who blinks first in the Mexican stand-off on Kevin Rudd’s proposed Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).
The National Party have derided the impacts Rudd’s ETS was expected to have on the area, with Nationals Senator Ron Boswell calling the Callide Dawson part of the ETS jobs killing fields, a sentiment echoed by Senator Barnaby Joyce who has tagged the ETS the Employment Termination Scheme for CQ.
The ETS legislation will be voted on in the Senate next week and it is not expected to be passed, before being voted on again in November.
Should it not get through a second time, the PM has a trigger to call a double dissolution election, and with Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull suffering from low opinion polls that may be something the millionaire MP would want to avoid.
Shadow Cabinet recently released nine design principles it would support for an ETS, such as offering the same protection for industry as the US.
It appears that many coalition MPs would not support an ETS even with Turnbull’s changes, given criticism by rebel MP Wilson Tuckey.
High profile Liberal Sydney Councillor Nick Adams recently declared that he did not believe in climate change, calling it “a crock.”
“The whole thing is a hoax- it’s a swindle,” Cr Adams said.
“The science is not settled and no credible evidence exists for climate change.
“In fact, there is a growing movement against this doomsday scenario nonsense.”
“Even if every single Australian simultaneously broke wind, it would have zero impact on the environment!
"Anyone that supports the ETS is not a true patriot.
“Anyone that supports the ETS does not want jobs for all Australians.
“They are traitors."
Senator Joyce said it appears the Australian public is going off the Government’s ETS, citing figures in the latest Australian News poll which shows those who either outright oppose or want the ETS delayed until after Copenhagen has risen to 53%, up from 33% of people polled last September.
He did not appear to support the shadow cabinet statement, despite stating he would support it in the form of amendments.
“It is a lesser form of a ridiculous idea,” Senator Joyce said.
“It’s like instead of amputating both legs you only amputate three fingers – it doesn’t mean you support amputation.”
He appeared unfazed by a double dissolution, despite the latest poor polls of the opposition.
“It won’t cost you seats if you stand up for them [voters].
“I think they [voters] want us to go into bat for them.”
Senator Joyce said the Nationals were the only party consistent on the ETS.
“Labor delayed the end of the world [by delaying ETS].
“Each day is a different story for the Liberals,” he said the Liberals ETS policy.
Senator Boswell said there would have to be a big shift for him to consider voting for an ETS.
He also talked tough, and didn’t think a double dissolution would harm the Nationals, agreeing opposing the ETS would stand them in good stead and cost the ALP.
“You can run in politics but you can’t hide,” Senator Boswell said.
A spokesperson said Nationals leader Warren Truss has never opposed an ETS, just Rudd’s.
“He has always been open to supporting one that is properly constituted and used as part of a suite of measures to improve the environment and combat climate change.”
The Nationals are champing at the bit to vote against it.
“We will be voting against it, no matter what any other party may decide,” Truss’ spokesperson said.
Climate Change Minister Penny Wong said the Australia’s greatest challenge was “being met on the other side of politics with indecision and disarray.”
Minister Wong said the Government would push ahead with a vote on the legislation despite head of the United Nations' climate change agency Yvo de Boer stating it doesn't matter if Australia doesn't have an emissions trading scheme in place by the time of the Copenhagen talks.
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