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Australia: Govt Can End 'Climate Wars'
Source: http://www.skynews.com.au
Source Date: Thursday, June 08, 2017
Focus: Institution and HR Management
Country: Australia
Created: Jun 10, 2017

Bill Shorten has extended an olive branch to the federal government to end the 'climate wars' and work together on a response to a major review of energy security.

The Labor leader has written to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to promise the opposition will approach Chief Scientist Alan Finkel's review recommendations with an open mind.

'After a decade of toxic politics surrounding energy and climate change policy, Australians are looking for both major parties to co-operate on a way forward,' Mr Shorten writes.

'It's regrettable that for too long this nation's energy and climate policy has been hostage to a small handful of climate sceptics in the Liberal Party - while power prices have gone up, pollution has gone up and investment has stalled.

'Continuing this approach is unsustainable - it risks jobs and Australia's economic future.'

He says the most effective policy for investment certainty in the energy sector is bipartisanship.

DrFinkel on Friday is widely expected to recommend the government adopt a low emissions target to encourage investment in cleaner energy, but with a technology neutral approach that could still support gas power station and coal with carbon capture and storage.

Mr Shorten says while Labor will not shift from its strong belief in the need for effective action on climate change, it is open to considering 'a well-designed low emissions target' or other alternative policies.

He's asked the government to give official briefings to the opposition and consult it on specific design options for any such policy as it is developed.

'Given energy is the lifeblood of the economy, and investment decisions are taken over 20 and 30 year horizons, we believe it is time to put an end to the 'climate wars' that have thwarted sensible energy policy over recent year.'

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