Clive Palmer MP of the Palmer United Party has announced that his party will vote for the abolishment of the carbon tax following a meeting Palmer had with Prime Minister Tony Abbott last week.
Conditions of Clive Palmer’s Pledge to Repeal the Carbon Tax
Clive Palmer has promised his party’s vote to the Prime Minister providing the Coalition replace their current direct action plan with a globally negotiated emission trading scheme. This would reduce the price businesses pay for carbon to zero, and the proposed emissions trading scheme would only come into operation once Australia’s major foreign trading partners have negotiated and legislated their own emission trading schemes. Clive Palmer has also demanded that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission must police electricity prices if he is to repeal the carbon tax. Clive Palmer has also said that the Palmer United Party will not support any legislation that proposes the abolishment of the Climate Change Authority or the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, and that they will vote against any reductions in the Renewable Energy Target (RET) before the next election. The level of influence Clive Palmer has over the senate is a result of an increased amount of Palmer United Party members in the senate by July when parliament will meet to vote on the budget. Clive Palmer stated his opposition to the carbon tax because of the high cost to the Australian public, but said he was only in favour of its abolishment providing the liberal party ensures that the savings are passed onto Australians in the form of lower electricity costs. Mr Abbot has said that Australians could expect to save as much as $550 annually if the carbon tax is abolished, with a majority of the savings coming from lower electricity costs, and the rest coming from lower transport, water and waste management costs. The Queensland Member of Parliament and mining magnate excused himself from the vote in the lower house concerning the abolition of the carbon tax on Thursday due to concerns over a conflict of interest with his mining businesses. Clive Palmer announced his party’s position on the carbon tax at a press conference with the Nobel prize winning climate change activist Al Gore.