Australia must step up on carbon pricing

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Griffith University researchers are among a group of ‘concerned economists’ who have this week urged members of Federal Parliament to make carbon pollution and carbon pricing a policy priority.

Director of the Asia Pacific Centre for Sustainable Enterprise, Professor Jeremy Williams, and Dr Chris Fleming, also a member of the APCSE, are among 59 signatories to the open letter.

The group argues that “a well-designed mechanism that puts a price and limit on carbon pollution is the most economically efficient way to reduce carbon emissions that cause global warming”.

The letter was penned as the Abbott government stepped up moves to fulfil an election promise to axe the carbon tax as the new Senate took its place in Canberra.

“We urge all Members of Parliament and Senators to work in the national interest towards lasting agreement on a fair, economically efficient and environmentally effective policy to price and limit carbon emissions,” the letter says.

Professor Williams says Australia’s commitment to sustained reductions in carbon emissions requires appropriate and considered long-term policy.

“It is absolutely crucial that Australia have an effective price and limit on pollution in place now to start Australia’s transition to a low-carbon economy,” he said.

The 59-strong group of Australian business and academic economists behind the letter includes former Liberal Party leader Dr John Hewson, financial sector economist Geoff Weir and Australian professors from universities across the globe.

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