Saturday salon 9/4

1. Whyalla in danger of disappearing from the map

You might recall Craig Emerson singing ‘no Whyalla wipe-out’ when the carbon tax was said to take it off the map. Seems it was always a lot more fragile than Emerson thought in the big bad world of open trade barriers.

Arrium’s share price has tanked in five years from over two dollars to two cents, and the company has gone into receivership. Bill Shorten has called for a national steel plan and the use of Australian steel in government funded infrastructure projects. Continue reading Saturday salon 9/4

Turnbull, and his party, on the slide

824063-malcolm-turnbull_cropped_225The honeymoon is over, the shine has come off, the political capital accruing to a new leader has been dissipated. Now it’s not just a matter of how many seats Turnbull will lose, Labor has a real chance.

That’s been the reaction to the latest Newspoll result (paywalled), which has Labor ahead 51-49 for the first time since Turnbull became PM. Labor winning 30 Newspolls in a row was one of the reasons Turnbull said that Abbott had to go. Continue reading Turnbull, and his party, on the slide

Where to with climate change policy?

BrisbaneIt seems Malcolm Turnbull will add climate change to the growing collection of policy areas, including funding for schools and hospitals, where he will essentially kick the can down the road to after the election. The third phase of The Climate Change Authority’s Special Review is due by 30 June 2016. That report will “recommend what action Australia should take to implement outcomes flowing from the Paris climate conference in a final report by 30 June 2016.”

Obviously the Turnbull government will not formulate a response before a July 2 election. Continue reading Where to with climate change policy?

Climate clippings 168

1. Tesla 3 sales going gangbusters

    Demand for Tesla Motors’ new lower-priced electric car surprised even the company’s CEO Friday as 198,000 people plunked down $US1,000 ($1302) deposits to reserve their vehicles.

    The orders came from across the globe even though the car isn’t scheduled for sale until late in 2017.

Continue reading Climate clippings 168

Turnbull’s tax train wreck

In what seemed like a thought bubble in a doorstop at Penrith Panthers Football Club, Turnbull announced handing back income tax powers to the states.

Julia Gillard left the Australian government with a few time bombs. The vision for schools contained in Gonski was fine and good, it just had to be paid for. So too the National Disability Insurance Scheme and the funding of decent hospitals as we age and get sicker.

It was too hard for Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott, so they snipped $80 billion over 10 years off the budget in the out-years. Turnbull agrees and wants to hand access to income tax back to the states. Continue reading Turnbull’s tax train wreck