If Jeff Bennett is quoted correctly his actions in seeking to torpedo a move to introduce a carbon tax are grossly irresponsible. That’s putting it mildly.
His claims about about impacts on Australian trade are particularly silly given that the structure of the carbon tax base has not yet been agreed to. Almost certainly the export sector will be largely exempt from charges – it was under the CPRS and proposed US regulation – so he is uninformed and is creating needless controversy.
His other claims about emissions growth in countries such as China suggest ignorance about what is happening in these countries too. China is cutting emissions intensities by 40% to 2020. These are credible targets given that China did hit 2010 targets.
I guess these types of remarks do grab a headline, particularly in The Australian. Maybe some see a payoff in this but, in my view, it is just such bad form to inject such flawed views into this debate.
Update My view of Bennett’s irresponsibily (and single-mindedness) are confirmed by this interview with the ABC. Jeff’s fixations on community willingness to pay estimates are illuminating – here he is providing disinformation which helps distort such estimates. (293)