Australia will experience unprecedented job losses at the hands of the Federal Government’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme, Concept Economics’ economic modelling has found.
The study, conducted by former Executive Director of the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (ABARE) Dr Brian Fisher, indicated that 23,510 direct jobs will be lost across Australia’s minerals industry by 2020, and 66,480 by 2030.
The model represents the first detailed analysis of the impact of the proposed emissions scheme on employment across the Australian minerals sector.
Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) chief executive officer Mitchell Hooke said the scheme represents the worst of both worlds.
“By imposing the world’s highest carbon costs on Australia’s minerals exporters, it will destroy jobs in our most important industries without delivering any appreciable reduction in global emissions,” he said.
“We share the government’s commitment to reducing emissions, but this modelling shows the CPRS is fundamentally flawed.”
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche said there was not a major mining or minerals processing activity in Queensland that would not be significantly affected in 10 and 20 years’ time under the emissions trading scheme.
“The study confirms that the CPRS will be mostly successful in exporting jobs and emissions to competitor countries unlikely to match Australia’s commitment to greenhouse gas emission targets,” he said.
“One simple change to the CPRS would deliver a cap-and-trade emissions reductions scheme without the job destroying impact of the current design. It should include a phased approach to emissions trading – with the number of carbon permits auctioned increasing over time.”
Roche said the CPRS would affect Australia’s competitiveness on a global scale.
“The CPRS will result in a transfer of coal output from Queensland to countries such as Indonesia, South Africa and Colombia without an appreciable reduction in global emissions,” he said.
Last month, the Federal Government delayed the introduction of the scheme by one year.