Wednesday 19 April 2023
ANY VEHICLE EMISSIONS CHANGES MUST BE FAIR TO ALL AUSTRALIANS
The Albanese Government must ensure that any vehicle emissions policy changes focus on the overall objectives of promoting lower emissions and keeping cars affordable, not just pandering to EV vested interests.
Responding to today’s announcement of its “EV strategy”, Senator McKenzie said the Government had decided to push out a decision on emissions standards till later in the year with another round of discussions to take place with stakeholders.
“Our serious concerns remain that, in any proposed policy changes, the Government needs to ensure that the vulnerable and the geographically disadvantaged are not discriminated against in any low emissions policy changes,” Senator McKenzie said.
Energy Minister Chris Bowen and Transport Minister Catherine King today announced a further round of consultations on emissions standards and a “strategy” on electric vehicles.
But Senator McKenzie said the path to lower emissions in the transport industry had to be broader in its vision and take in options for hybrids, and other fuel sources.
“Australians are driving cars based on current legal frameworks and therefore also should not be punished retrospectively by any new policy prescriptions.
“We will hold the Government to their claims that current drivers of vehicles will not be discriminated against of financially disadvantaged in proposed policy changes.
“We know industry is seeking a path forward on fuel efficiency standards, but any design changes must have regard to Australia and its geographical uniqueness and must take into consideration our reliance on utes and other work vehicles.
“We remain very concerned about a strategy that is not equitable and may favour certain types of vehicles or certain Australians over others.
“There are multiple pathways to a lower emissions transport sector, and hybrids must be part of the solution. Australians need to be able to keep doing what they are doing in a vehicle they can afford – whether that is an EV, a low emissions vehicle or one powered by bio-fuels.”
“Europe has set a similar target to Australia of 45 per cent of 2005 emissions by 2030 and yet it also recognises that transport is a hard to abate sector and have set a realistic transport specific target of just 12 per cent,” Senator McKenzie said.