Amid all the political posturing about to take centre stage as the government’s emissions trading bill works its way through the House of Representatives, there have been moments of great clarity in the debate in recent days that business will do well to take on board.
The first was the admission from opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull that an emissions trading scheme is inevitable. If not now, then sometimes very soon.
If this was a statement of the bleeding obvious to those who have followed the issue closely, the admission bursts through the political fog as a clarion call to business: There will be a carbon price in the global economy that needs to be factored into all aspects of the business, and up and down the supply chain, and with carbon-conscious business customers at home and abroad. This will create impacts and opportunities, and the sooner Australian business comes to grips with it – particularly with its dependence on fossil-fuelled energy – the better.
The second piece of clarity in the debate was the emergence of Santos CEO David Knox into the public arena on the issue of the ETS and its potential delay.