Hanson Young: I rise to speak to the Competition and Consumer Amendment (Abolition of Limited Merits Review) Bill 2017.( Senator Di Natale has already outlined that the Greens support this bill,) for a number of reasons. We have just been sitting in the chamber listening to the long-drawn-out arguments—the whack-job arguments—from Senator Malcolm Roberts and Senator Bernardi, people who don’t believe in the science of climate change and don’t believe that Australians have the right to proper investment in clean, renewable energy. Senator Roberts carried on his usual spray about how climate change isn’t real because, well, Senator Roberts doesn’t believe it to be so—kind of like Senator Roberts’s own citizenship scenario, I’d suggest: he doesn’t believe he’s a dual citizen, so therefore it mustn’t be the case, despite all of the evidence to the contrary. So we will put that aside. And it may have been Senator Roberts’s last speech in this place. He did cover a big breadth of topics, from the family unit, gay marriage, freedom of speech and freedom of thought to climate change, all to talk about electricity prices. He did also throw in that people who live on welfare live better than kings did 200 years ago. I’m not sure how many people out there living on the disability pension or on the pension or on social security benefits feel as though they live like kings. But, there you go—that is this representative of One Nation from Queensland: welfare recipients live like kings! I respectfully disagree.
The scary thing, however, is that it is not just these whack-job arguments from people like Senator Roberts. These are also arguments put forward by former prime ministers, like former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who, of course, has his own whacked-out ideas about climate change: he thinks it’s crap, doesn’t believe it, and asks, ‘What’s the problem with climate change anyway?’ because maybe it’s better to die in the heat than it is to die in the cold. And that is the level of maturity and understanding being trumpeted by our former Prime Minister—overseas, no less. I mean, he is giving an embarrassing name to Australia in his international gallivanting.
One Nation’s obsession, however, against action on climate change and against people who take the decision to put solar panels on their roofs is what I really wanted to speak about today in relation to this bill, because we know that millions and millions of Australians have opted to put solar panels on their roofs, and that’s because they know that it drives down their power bills and is also a really good way to help the planet and to reduce pollution. In fact, in Pauline Hanson’s and Malcolm Roberts’s own state of Queensland, 34 per cent of households have solar on their roofs—34 per cent; that is the largest in the country. And Australia is now at the front—it is No. 1 in the world—when it comes to solar on households’ rooftops. People love their solar panels. They love being able to invest in their own creation of energy, reduce their power bills and help when it comes to tackling climate change and global warming. But, of course, Pauline Hanson wants to rip all of this away. She doesn’t believe that people should be supported through the renewable energy target. She doesn’t believe that people should have support for putting solar on their roofs from feed-in tariffs. She doesn’t believe in the support mechanisms through the ARENA or indeed the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. She wants this parliament to junk all of that. If she had her way, Pauline Hanson would rip solar panels off people’s houses. That is how obsessed she is against renewable energy.
If Senator Pauline Hanson had her way, she would rip solar panels off every house and rooftop across the country. That is how obsessed Senator Hanson is when it comes to renewable energy and to people who are trying to do their best to reduce their power bills and reduce pollution at the same time.
Thirty-four per cent of Queenslanders have solar on their roofs. Senator Pauline Hanson, One Nation, want to rip them off, rip away that money and rip away that support, and, instead, spend billions of dollars building coal-fired power stations. How are we going to pay for that? People’s taxes are going to go up. People’s taxes are going to go up because no bank and no investors want to build these things. So we’re going to rip money out of the hands of regular, everyday Australians and hand it to big coal companies so that they can create dirty power and charge households and small businesses exorbitant bills in order to power their homes and their shopfronts. Senator Pauline Hanson wants to take money from everyday Australians and give it to coal companies, and she will increase taxes on her way through. This is the type of loony, whack-job policy coming from One Nation and now being supported by people like Senator Cory Bernardi and our own former Prime Minister Tony Abbott—whack job after whack job after whack job!
Thank goodness Australians are smarter than this. They love their solar on their roofs and they love their renewable energy target. The poll out today in The Australian newspaper shows huge support for supporting renewables—huge support. Sixty-three per cent of people across the country want the renewable energy target and support for renewables to stay in place because they want cheaper power and they want it to be reliable. They also want to reduce carbon emissions and reduce pollution. Whether the whack jobs in this place believe it or not, climate change is real, it’s getting worse and Australians want us to do something about it. Senator Malcolm Roberts of course stood here in the chamber and gave us one of his amazing, wide-ranging speeches about how terrible everything is because he doesn’t believe in it. Senator Roberts, your own empirical evidence lacking in your own citizenship case means that that may have been your final speech in this place. I’m not sure how we’re going to cope without a good giggle on a Monday morning!
Chamber Senate on 16/10/2017 Item BILLS – Competition and Consumer Amendment (Abolition of Limited Merits Review) Bill 2017 – Second Reading Speaker:Hanson-Young, Sen Sarah/ Parliment transcript used for Reporting News