Over Christmas we saw the release of a damning report.

A report which confirmed that pollution levels under this Government were not only rising, but that they would continue to rise for the foreseeable future.

Bizarrely, pollution results under Malcolm Turnbull, as Prime Minister, are even worse than the results that we found under Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

This Government’s only answer to addressing the challenges of climate change has been the absurd proposal to build more coal-fire plants when the rest of the world is investing in renewable energy.

We have seen renewable energy under this Government go backwards at an alarming rate. Some 3,000 jobs have been lost while in the rest of the world this industry has continued to grow.

The energy industry, broader Australian industry as well as energy experts have made it clear; new coal fired power stations are more expensive, dirtier and less flexible than all of the other alternatives.

One of the world’s most respected energy analysts, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, have stated that these proposed new coal plants would increase energy prices.

And of course, such is the state of the international energy market that coal fire stations struggle to get the investment required to make them viable.

It is a damning indictment of the Government’s ‘clean coal’ debacle that Professor Clive Hamilton from Charles Sturt University tendered his resignation from the Climate Change Authority in disgust.  And I might add that his resignation letter is a searing read.

This new thought bubble  by the Turnbull Government is just a right wing approved distraction from the fact that those opposite have no plan to deal with the challenges facing the electricity sector, and that they lack the courage and the vision to develop one.

This week we saw the Turnbull Government double down on its fraud on the electorate asserting that South Australian blackouts were the result of the renewable mix. We know of course that this is a nonsense. A careful and prudent study of the facts tells us that the failure to apply the available and required reserve energy meant that increased demand in South Australia bought about the collapse and a black out. It had nothing whatsoever to do with the energy mix. And yet this remarkable untruth is being propagated with such force by this Government because it makes sure that the people of Australia aren’t looking at the true causes.

The true causes being a Government that has no answers to the great questions of our time.

Not only was it shown that the Prime Minister ignored official advice that renewable energy was not to blame, they completely ignored the fact that load shedding occurred in NSW.

NSW is a jurisdiction that has one of the highest reliance on coal in the world at 82%.

Deputy speaker, the way forward is renewable energy. The way forward is a national electricity sector plan that sees our economy transition.

15 FEBRUARY 2017.

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