Labor dumps a bit of green extremism, but it’s mostly symbolic
Anthony Albanese says “Yes” to Coal (only with Carbon Capture) but still “No” to Nukes. Keeps the same emissions target.
After losing three elections in a row on and with help from SARS-2, the Labor Party have realized they can’t wedge the coalition by being holier-than-all-the-workers that used to vote for them. They can’t be seen as anti-coal. So just in time for a key marginal byelection, Anthony Albanese, leader of the Opposition, offers a token olive leaf.
He’s got his eye on the Queensland election due in October, and all those seats the Labor party lost one year ago.
Federal Opposition leader Anthony Albanese has urged the Coalition to work with Labor on a bipartisan energy policy…
So Labor will support “development” of Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS). This is the impossible idea of stuffing a gas back down the small hole it used to live in, when it was a rock and before it met O2 and grew threefold in weight and 2,000 times in volume.* Everyone in polite society knows it can’t work, but if you have to hate coal and also live with it, CCS is the get-out-of-jail card, where people can pretend that they want to find a low carbon way of burning a fuel made of carbon.
Ultimately the Labor Party are still climate believers with an uncosted zero emission target by 2050.
They probably figure if they get lucky, and the Coalition does create a “scalable” energy plan with them, they can just ramp up the targets on it if they win the election, then say they’re just using the bipartisan plan and “speeding” it up.
It’s not about reducing carbon — it’s about helping the renewables industry
Watch the deck-chairs of Labor desires:
However he said those [CCS] projects should not be funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) or the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), as recommended by a recent review, arguing support should not be diverted from renewables.
Labor also remains opposed to the Emissions Reduction Fund, which pays organisations to reduce their carbon emissions…
Labor don’t want climate-money paid to friends of the Coalition, meaning farmers or small business owners, it wants money shuffled to renewables companies (friends of Labor). But the farmers and small business owners are reducing carbon at bargain prices compared to multinational Renewable giants.
The Emissions Reductions Fund was Tony Abbott’s direct auction plan, but Big-solar and Big-wind can’t compete with $14 a ton carbon reduction, which is why Albanese wants to funnel the money through other agencies. He says he wants to stop the pork barrelling, but he’d be stopping a successful program in order to send more pork to his friends. Big Renewables need Big Government.
Nukes would be a disaster for the Labor Party, they’d “solve” the climate crisis
Some Coalition MPs have called for the Government to look at establishing a domestic nuclear power industry, but Labor has again made it clear it does not back such a move.
The worst thing for the Labor Party (and the Renewables industry) is if the Coalition managed to get a nuclear plant running in Australia. It would achieve all the carbon reduction that wind, solar, geothermal, biomass and carbon capture could never do.
The National Energy Guarantee — the NEG is dead
The Labor Party has effectively dumped the NEG — which Malcolm Turnbull promoted. It was a hidden carbon tax on electricity generators forcing them to buy international carbon credits — something that suits the Big Bankers and the Big UN. It was designed to be impossible for coal. It was always a Labor preferred plan — improbably endorsed by Labor, but not the Coalition, reminding us of that old cliche, that Turnbull was the best Leader the Labor Party never had.
The Labor plan has no plan
Energy Minister Angus Taylor criticised Mr Albanese’s speech today at the National Press Club, arguing it left a lot of questions unanswered. “They didn’t explain how their energy policies will create a single job,” he said.
“They didn’t explain how they’re going to bring down prices, how they’re going to keep the lights on, they didn’t explain what their targets were and they didn’t explain how they’re going to achieve those targets.”
The most significant change announced here is that Labor is aiming more for the centre, trying to look less extreme-Green. They’re still pandering to the Green vote, but they are trying in a small way to pander to the struggling Australians and blue collar workers too.
The Coronavirus era has meant people like seeing more bipartisan governments — with some agreement, good manners, and less adversarial nit-picking and demonization. Albanese is trying to look statesmanlike and cooperative. But that’s a lot better than trying to present themselves as smug Guru’s opposing corporate Nazi planet wreckers..
Paul Kelly, The Australian: Albanese’s offer one Morrison must refuse
The Labor leader’s speech and letter to the Prime Minister shows the coronavirus, not the bushfires, is framing climate change policy for Labor — as distinct from the Greens. Albanese is taking Morrison’s success with co-operative politics over COVID-19 and inviting him to achieve “bipartisan agreement” on climate change.
It is a neat but deceptive ploy. There will be no negotiation and no grand bargain. Albanese’s calculation was that if Morrison agreed, that would boost Labor’s “olive branch” credentials; but if Morrison declined, then Labor would have the moral high ground for seeking to repair the great energy policy divide.
Symbolic deck chairs are shaking.
*Calculating the expansion of coal to CO2: 1 ton of Coal generates 2.8 tons of CO2. 1 ton coal fills 0.74m3. 1 ton of CO2 fills 556m3. Therefore, 1 ton of coal expands from 0.74 to 1590m3. or about 2148 times.