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Chinese ETS will be here in months: Combet

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
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Australia is in talks with China, California and South Korea as it pushes for an Asia-Pacific carbon market, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet says.

Mr Combet says Australia has worked closely with China as it developed its carbon price plans over the past two years.

In an address to the Australia China Climate Change Forum in Sydney on Wednesday, he attacked Opposition Leader Tony Abbott's scepticism about China's carbon price plans.

"This is a case of the opposition campaign of deceit on carbon pricing going international," Mr Combet has told visiting Chinese officials.

"I can tell you the political will is there and by the end of this year, emissions trading will be up and running in China."

Speaking at a joint press conference with Chinese National Development and Reform Commission vice president Xie Zhenhua, Mr Combet said Australia's own emissions trading scheme could help shape China's approach.

"Our ambition is to ultimately try and link (Asia-Pacific) schemes together and to do that, we need to be closely cooperating in design features of the schemes," he told reporters.

He said any attempt to repeal Australia's price on carbon would be environmentally and economically "reckless" and would "trash our international reputation".

"To pretend that Australia lives in a vacuum, and that we can repeal the most cost-effective way of reducing emissions in our economy, is a complete fantasy," he said.

"It would harm a lot of investors in the renewable energy sector."

China, Australia's major trading partner, has pledged to reduce carbon emissions per unit of GDP by 17 per cent from 2010 levels by 2015 and by 40 to 45 per cent below 2005 levels by 2020.

24/11/2014 02:55Sydney, Australia. 24 November,2014
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