Dawson MP George Christensen. Picture: Heidi Petith
Dawson MP George Christensen. Picture: Heidi Petith

MP against move to net zero emissions by 2050 if jobs lost

Dawson MP George Christensen says he will not “bend to the demands of the UN or greenie mobs” in supporting the push to net zero emissions by 2050 if it will cost jobs.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has not committed Australia to a net zero target, but said his preference was to achieve the goal by 2050.

In a statement on his official Facebook page, Mr Christensen said if there was a technological breakthrough – such as commercialised and cheap fusion energy – then he expected the whole world would move to net zero.

“Outside of such a quantum leap in technology, there should be no move towards net zero if it means job losses in industries such as mining, farming and manufacturing or anywhere else for that matter,” he said.

“I’m here as the Member for Dawson to fight for local jobs, not to bend to the demands of the UN or greenie mobs.

“And so it is my firm view that Australia should never sacrifice its workers on the altar of climate change.”

Queensland Labor Senator Murray Watt said there was clear division within the Morrison Government over the issue.

“The government’s division means regional Queensland is missing out on new jobs that other countries are creating – in hydrogen, renewables and manufacturing powered by new, cheaper energy,” the Labor spokesman for Queensland Resources said.

“Why does George Christensen want to stop workers in the Mackay region from getting these new jobs?

“When the National Farmers Federation, BHP, Rio Tinto, Santos and many other resource companies support net zero emissions and the jobs it will create, why is George Christensen saying no?”

Labor Senator Murray Watt. Picture: Peter Carruthers
Labor Senator Murray Watt. Picture: Peter Carruthers

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Mr Watt said Central Queensland would keep exporting coal, gas and other resources for years to come, but should not turn its back on new energy and manufacturing jobs that other countries were grabbing.

The Australian has reported trade-exposed emissions-intensive industries, including the farming sector, are likely to be excluded from any plan to reach net zero emissions by 2050.

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