Ross Garnaut has launched a scathing attack on the Government's emissions trading policy, condemning its failure to embrace a more ambitious goal and the multibillion-dollar compensation for electricity generators.Are these words meant to excite laughter or amusement? What a circus!
In his first intervention after Monday's unveiling of the Government's blueprint, Professor Garnaut — the Government's climate guru — said last night that the plan would get "5½ out of 10 at a good university".
Writing in today's Age, he says it makes large transfers of money "from the general community to particular interests", and warns of its fiscal and environmental risks.
There is "no public policy justification for $3.9 billion in unconditional payments to generators" for hypothetical future loss of asset value.
"Never in the history of Australian public finance has so much been given without public policy purpose, by so many, to so few," he writes. "The best that can be said is that these are once-and-for-all payments — unless the spectacular success of investment in lobbying inspires repetition and emulation." >> more