Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced that she may not be able to keep key election promises due to the existing government’s environment after the ‘hung parliament’.
Saying that it would not be “business as usual”, Gillard told Fairfax that what she said before the Federal election regarding climate change issues is now irrelevant as the policy will now be developed by a committee of climate change experts and politicians.
She said she is now recognising the political reality of the situation.
"We are in a new environment where in order for any action to happen in this Parliament, you need more consensus than the views and policies of the Government and this committee is the way of recognising that,” Gillard explained.
“We have also agreed with the Greens and more broadly that we will have an inclusive climate change committee to work towards a better way of addressing climate change in Australia,” she added.
This comes on the back of BHP chief executive Marius Kloppers calling for the Government to create a transparent pricing scheme for carbon emissions.
While Gillard welcomed the statements from Kloppers, she declined to outline a timetable for the establishment of a carbon price, saying that the Government wants to work towards a price on carbon but believes that a market mechanism can provide a more fair and transparent pricing.
However, Opposition leader Tony Abbot urged the Government to reject a carbon tax as it would harm the nation’s international competiveness.
"This idea that we here in Australia should put a big tax on our businesses and on our consumers in the absence of similar action from other countries would just put our exports at a terrible competitive disadvantage,” Abbot said.