As Coalition chooses more coal, Labor must pick sides: Greens

As Coalition chooses more coal, Labor must pick sides: Greens 

Following both Malcolm Turnbull's announcement that the government will pressure AGL to keep the Liddell coal-fired power station open and Labor's statement in the Australian Financial Review today that “it could never do another deal with the Greens on energy policy” but "is open to work (sic) with the government”, Greens climate change and energy spokesperson, Adam Bandt MP, urged the Labor party to stop aiding and abetting climate criminals and instead join the Greens in a push to stop the Liddell move and develop an effective energy policy. 

Labor's embrace of the Coalition followed an urging yesterday from Mr Bandt for Labor to wait until this hopeless government was kicked out of office and to work with the Greens to implement effective climate legislation, including an extended Renewable Energy Target and a plan to phase-out coal-fired power, not a 'clean' energy target that includes dirty, polluting coal. 

Quotes attributable to Mr Bandt:

"To meet the climate targets set in Paris, Australia needs to start closing one coal-fired power station every year. Instead, the Liberals are criminally trying to keep these polluters open and Labor looks ready to aid and abet them.

“In Question Time today, Malcolm Turnbull said he was exploring how to keep Liddell power station open for 5 more years after its planned closure date of 2022. 

"By saying they'll only side with the Coalition on climate, Labor is enabling coal to stay in the system longer.

"A year ago, Labor was agreeing with the energy industry and the Greens that we need a plan for the orderly retirement of coal-fired power stations. Now they're sidling up to develop a 'bipartisan' energy policy that keeps coal in the system for longer.

"Even the government no longer seems prepared to call it a 'clean' energy target, as it now bears scant resemblance to the Chief Scientist's plan.

"The Turnbull government, hounded by Tony Abbott and the coal industry, is set to work with Labor to kill off the Chief Scientist’s plan for a Clean Energy Target and instead support dirty and ageing coal fired stations to stay open longer.

"Labor can work with the Greens to stop this crazy commitment to coal, turf out a rotten government in climate denial and then develop an effective energy policy. Or Labor can prop up a dying Coalition government with an 'energy target' that keeps coal in the system for longer. It's time to choose, Labor."

Media contact: Gideon Reisner, 0429 109 054

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