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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

19 October 2006

Labor out of touch on climate change, again

Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, today said that the Shuangliao wind energy installation, a joint Australia-China business venture, put paid to the lies that have been constantly peddled that Australian businesses would be locked out of opportunities available through the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).

Senator Campbell launched the project, a collaborative effort between Australia's Roaring 40s Company and China's Datang Corporation (one of the five major state-owned electricity generation corporations in China) on Tuesday.

It will generate energy for tens of thousands of people in China's Jilin province and save up to 200,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year.

"For years the Labor Party has been banging on, saying that because Australia had not ratified the Kyoto Protocol, Australian businesses would miss out on opportunities under the CDM. Today Mr Albanese has suddenly realised that he is wrong," Senator Campbell said.

"This project was made possible through the business-to-business contacts fostered under the Australia-China Climate Change Partnership. If it was a 100 per cent owned Aussie project it wouldn't be built in China. Chinese law requires 51 per cent ownership.

"The rules on ownership and qualification are in fact quite flexible.

"This project promotes Australian renewable energy experience and expertise, will give a large number of people access to energy they never had before, and is good for the global environment.

"It is a great example of the type of partnerships both our broader bilateral climate change relationship and this specific business mission are designed to create partnerships that benefit both the businesses involved and the environment.

"We understand that it is also currently going through the validation process to be registered as a CDM project the Australian Government is pleased to be able to help facilitate Australian business partnerships between other companies and other countries.

"While the Australian Government cannot itself participate in the CDM, the Australian Government has repeatedly made the point that Australian companies do have means to access this mechanism."

"At a time when the Government is making a difference by creating real projects in Australia and China to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the ALP is spreading misinformation and discouraging Aussie firms from getting involved.

Media contact:
Rob Broadfield 02 6277 7640 or 0409 493 902

Commonwealth of Australia