Bernardi’s coal- fired up about NQ power

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - DOMANII CAMERON

COAL has as big a fu­ture now as it has in the past, ac­cord­ing to Aus­tralian Con­ser­va­tives leader Se­na­tor Cory Bernardi.

The party founder was in Townsville yes­ter­day as part of his Bernardi Queens­land Tour and gave a speech at the North Queens­land Club.

It comes af­ter the party was reg­is­tered in Vic­to­ria this week.

Speak­ing to the Bul­letin yes­ter­day, Mr Bernardi said ze­roe­mis­sions tar­gets were non­sen­si­cal, blam­ing all of Aus­tralia’s elec­tric­ity prob­lems on gov­ern­ment poli­cies.

“Bring it ( coal) on,” he said. “We can ship the coal to In­dia but we can’t burn it our­selves; it’s non­sen­si­cal.” Mr Bernardi, who con­ceded he did not know how the Con­ser­va­tives would “play out” in Townsville, said many na­tional is­sues were dis­cussed on his visit, in­clud­ing en­ergy and water.

“Aus­tralians de­serve the cheap­est and most re­li­able elec­tric­ity in the world,” he said. “If you want to build a coal- fired power sta­tion, govern­ments should give you an as­sur­ance that the terms un­der which you’ve built it are not go­ing to change.

“This is an ide­ol­ogy ( cli­mate change) that’s foisted upon us by un­elected, bu­reau­cratic, in­ter­na­tional or­gan­i­sa­tions.

“It’s some sort of guilt trip ( that) we’re steal­ing from the fu­ture. I think that’s crap.

“We’re not only hurt­ing the peo­ple of to­day but you’re not go­ing to have jobs in the fu­ture.”

Se­na­tor Bernardi said Aus­tralia paid too much at­ten­tion to what non- gov­ern­ment bod­ies such as the UN and en­vi­ron­men­tal groups preached.

“The time will come when re­new­able en­ergy will stack up,” he said. “If it stacks up lit­er­ally – eco­nom­i­cally – let them build it.”

Se­na­tor Bernardi said peo­ple in Townsville wanted to re­store “in­tegrity to the sys­tem”.

“They’re think­ing ‘ what’s hap­pen­ing to this great coun­try’,” he said. “They think it’s been di­min­ished. We think free en­ter­prise is im­por­tant, civil so­ci­ety is im­por­tant and we think the Gov­ern­ment should be lim­ited in their scope.”

Cory Bernardi

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