|Senator Milne in Lismore with NORCO staff|
Labor’s decision to cut climate programs to fund Rudd’s backflip on carbon pricing proves Labor can’t be trusted on the environment, Australian Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said.
“You don’t protect the environment by cutting the environment,” Senator Milne said.
“Today’s announcement is politically motivated and adds up to a $1 billion hit to the environment and the transition to clean energy.
“Labor’s capitulation to the big polluters will undermine clean energy business confidence and hurt the environment.
“Labor benefits, but farmers, manufacturers and the environment are the biggest losers.
“These cuts will hit regional Australia the hardest because these environmental programs are all about helping rural communities adapt to climate change and reduce their emissions.
“Let’s be clear, Rudd has abandoned rural and regional Australia to shore up support in marginal suburban electorates.
“All of this is politically motivated. We already have an Emissions Trading Scheme and EU linking – Rudd should have defended what we have instead of undermining confidence and attacking the environment.
“If he was genuinely interested in a fast transition to a low carbon economy he would have waited for the securing of the EU price and not rushed to help polluters take advantage of its weakness.
“It is also important to note there is still no commitment to a higher emissions reduction target then 5 per cent.
“When it comes to climate change – Abbott is a denier, Rudd is a backflipper and only the Greens can be trusted to address global warming.
“On top of all this Labor is now attacking the public service putting 800 jobs on the line – doing Tony Abbott’s work for him.”
The losses to the environment include:
Today’s green cuts
• $213 million Biodiversity Fund
• $143 million Carbon Farming Futures
• $362 million Clean Technology Program
Previous cuts announced in the May 2013-14 Budget:
• $257 million Biodiversity Fund
• $627m ARENA and low carbon communities
TOTAL LOSS: $1.6 billion