Thursday, 22 May 2008

Leaving petrol off emissions trading scheme 'dangerous'

The Greens say any moves to leave petrol out of the Federal Government's emissions trading scheme will render it ineffective.

At the National Press Club yesterday Opposition's treasury spokesman Malcolm Turnbull could not definitely say whether the Coalition's plan to cut the fuel excise tax would be taken to the next election.

But he did indicate he was willing to consider the idea that fuel should be left out of the emissions trading scheme being developed by the Government.

Greens Senator Christine Milne has said that would be dangerous.

"You simply won't have a national effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions if you exempt the transport sector," she said.

"Malcolm Turnbull is lurching from one bad policy to an even worse policy.

"We have to bring down emissions and we have to get people off oil, that means a major investment in public transport."

Diesel prices 'may reach $2.00 a litre'

Diesel pump prices could reach $2 a litre by next year, a fuel monitoring company says.

It also predicts a "continual gradual upward movement" in the price of unleaded petrol during the next two months.

Diesel has hit $1.80 a litre in some capital cities while unleaded petrol pushed through the $1.60 mark on Wednesday on the back of rising world oil prices.

Increased demand from China is contributing to the cost of diesel, Fueltrac managing director Chris Cable says.

"They're actually starting to stockpile diesel, with a view to building efforts in that part of the world," he said.

"I understand that they're also trying to ensure that there are no power disruptions around the Olympic Games (in August)."

Mr Cable has warned motorists that fuel prices are still on the way up.

"The general consensus around our office is that there will be a continual gradual upward movement in the price of both unleaded and diesel over at least the next couple of months," he said.

"$2 a litre I would hope doesn't materialise.

"Given that we've already reached $1.80 and even higher for diesel then ... I wouldn't have said this six months ago, but absolutely definitely possible, for at least diesel (to hit $2 a litre)."

Separately, RACV manager of government and corporate relations David Cumming says Melbourne motorists should brace for prices at the bowser as high as $1.63 a litre next week and warned the worst was yet to come.

"Unfortunately we haven't peaked yet at all, some will attempt to go $162.9, some will attempt to go at a higher price next week," Mr Cumming said.

"Just prepare yourself for higher prices, that's all I can say."


Aust's ecological footprint one of biggest in world: index
The annual Climate Living Index, which measures humanity's demand on natural resources, has listed Australia's ecological footprint as one of the biggest in the world.

Climate change hot topic at youth 2020 summits
More than 500 schools held talks during the past month ahead of the Federal Government's Youth Summit in Canberra this weekend. Ms Gillard says she is not surprised the environment is the number one concern of many children.

Greenpeace to give Treasurer carbon capture petition
A petition with 30,000 signatures will today be handed to the Federal Treasurer's office urging the Government to abandon its investment in carbon capture and storage.

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