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Speers keeps trying to nail down exactly how much the government’s plan is going to cost over the next two decades.
Taylor admits that the government has only planned how much it is going to spend over the next decade.
On the cost of this plan, to be clear for viewers, $20 billion between now and 2030, you are then hoping that everything will be okay? Businesses will voluntarily take up the new technologies. We won’t have to spend any more as taxpayers to get to net zero?
David, we are committing between now and 2030, looking 10 years out. Governments often look only four years out. We are looking 10 years out … What a government does in the late 2040s is a matter for them … we are not going to bind a government as to what they should spend in the 2040s, that will be up to them.
… What we can control as a government is a pipeline of initiatives and programs that allow us it put us on track to get the cost of these crucial technologies, clean steel, clean aluminium, stored energy, clean hydrogen, soil carbon … to the point where private sector deployment happens because it’s good for those investors, where it’s good for those businesses, where indeed it is good for those households. That’s the goal and that means you avoid having to pay the very significant cost of having a carbon tax.
I understand that’s what you’re hoping, but just to be clear, what are taxpayers going to have to pay under your plan to get to net zero?
Taxpayers are not paying anything, we are not raising taxes. That’s the important point here.
You are using taxpayers’ dollars, right, which could either be used to pay off debtor spend on hospitals or whatever. You are using taxpayers’ dollars. $20 billion you mentioned to get to 2030. To get to net zero by 2050, what’s the cost to taxpayers?
Well, let’s be clear about what that $20 billion is. That is money that we have invested through the CSIRO, the climate solutions fund, a range of different sources to bring down the costs of those technologies so they can raise productivity, strengthen the economy and grow the economy.