Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Tensions erupt in Turnbull government over climate and energy policy

Climate-change policy has ignited tensions within the federal government, with a group of backbench MPs led by Tony Abbott confronting Malcolm Turnbull over the proposed Clean Energy Target in a special party room meeting.

The Coalition held a special meeting on climate change policy on Tuesday. 
As one MP in the room put it afterwards: "Malcolm could lose his leadership over this if he doesn't listen to us.”

The disquiet means that Environment and Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg is likely to have little choice but to significantly modify the CET, as proposed in chief scientist Alan Finkel's review, to keep the backbench on-side as he finalises the Coalition's policy response, which is expected as soon as the end of July.

If he does, Mr Frydenberg runs the risk of putting Labor offside - particularly if the policy is too coal-friendly - and dashing the chance of the major parties striking compromise and ending the climate policy wars. 

Read James Massola’s story in today’s Melbourne Age - “Tensions erupt in Turnbull government over climate and energy policy.”

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