Time to end CPRS special pleading and deception Media Release

Jul 29, 2009 - 12:42pm

The Climate Institute today called on the coal industry and other big polluters to end their campaigns of relentless special pleading and deception over the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme as it threatened to stifle growing jobs and profits in a clean energy economy.

“All credible modelling, including that used by the big polluters, shows that we can have significant reductions in carbon pollution and still grow jobs and the economy,” said John Connor, Climate Institute CEO.

“The big polluters and some sections of the media intentionally or otherwise misrepresent a relative drop in employment in models against theoretical reference cases as an absolute drop when in fact the results show that absolute employment numbers continue to grow.

“This was highlighted in May when the Minerals Council of Australia tried this trick but the CFMEU pointed out the MCA claims of impacts actually showed growth in mining jobs of up to 120% in Australian states under the CPRS.”   

The Minerals Council of Australia’s CEO, Mitch Hooke, recognised this when he told a recent Senate inquiry:

“we are not suggesting this is scorched earth. We know we are going to continue to grow.”

Modelling by the International Energy Agency, the Garnaut Review and Australian Treasury has shown that under strong emissions reduction targets, the coal industry will continue to prosper, The Climate Institute said.

Under a Garnaut scenario where Australia reduces emissions by 25 percent below 2000 levels by 2020 and 90 percent by 2050, the gross value of Australia’s coal industry increases by over 35 percent by 2050.

“Coal lobby advertising seeking further compensation and claims that the CPRS will ‘lead to job losses’ is reckless, backward looking and irresponsible and is throwing up obstacles to a transition to a successful and sustainable clean energy economy.”

“Handing over more money to coal would unfairly burden the rest of the economy and divert money that should be invested in clean technology to help households and businesses prepare and prosper in the clean energy economy.”

“We are prepared for sensible discussions about how to best target the existing hundreds of millions of dollars of support already dedicated to the coal industry but we call on the coal industry and other big polluters to stop this misrepresentation of economic modelling,” concluded Mr Connor.

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