We now have Angus Taylor looking to change the rules of the CEFC and ARENA to further prop up fossil fuels. And his ‘hand-picked for previously expressed views’ advisers are giving a veneer of consultation to what is a full-court press to prolong the ‘climate destruction for profit’ policies of Coalition donors.
Parliamentary disclosure is a joke. The Register of Members’ Interests is routinely gamed and ignored by politicians. This is where MPs are supposed to declare their financial interests. Yet even when they do so, in accordance with the rules, key financial conflicts can be concealed. For instance, where an MP puts his lawyer as director of a company which is trustee for a trust and his niece as the beneficiary of that trust, does he or she even have to disclose the existence of a trust at all? In the case of controversial minister Angus Taylor, there have been blatant breaches. Taylor is by no means alone. Jommy Tee reports on Taylor’s other Cayman Islands company, AML
“There’s just no transparency or accountability around this,” Steggall told Guardian Australia. “We’ve seen what happened with sport rorts. We’re talking about commonwealth money at a time when we know the economy has taken a hit due to coronavirus, and I think it should be properly investigated.”
The Australia Institute analysis is based in part on a legal opinion by barristers Fiona McLeod SC and Lindy Barrett, which said Taylor does not have constitutional authority over electricity or legislative authority to fund projects as proposed under the Ungi scheme.
Federal Energy Minister Angus Taylor, who has a history of disclosure failures and being embroiled in scandals, yesterday updated his pecuniary interests register to reflect thousands of dollars worth of gifts from Virgin Australia and Qantas. These disclosures were made only after questions for this story. Taylor’s office points the finger at alleged co-offenders in the ALP but just how many Coalition MPs have failed to report largesse from the nation’s two major airlines, both of which are now demanding the Government support them with billions in public money? Anthony Klan reports
The Angus Taylor Plan of Economic Management (ODT)
Except, despite what Taylor has claimed, investors are actually calling on governments to put in place policies that will support a transition away from fossil fuels, including the reintroduction of a carbon price, a phase-out of fossil fuel subsidies and an end to thermal coal.
A collection of 477 global investors have issued a joint statement ahead of a meeting of G20 leaders in Osaka, calling on governments to do more to tackle climate change and plan for a world without coal.
Specifically, investors have called on governments to “put a meaningful price on carbon” and to “phase out thermal coal power worldwide by set deadlines.”
The group of investors, that manage a combined $US34 trillion in investment assets, with signatories to the statement including Australian investment managers, including Australian Super, Cbus, Hesta, First State Super, IFM Investors and BT Financial Group.
During his tenure as federal energy minister, Angus Taylor has overseen a period of increasing greenhouse gas emissions in Australia and has raised fears among members of the COAG energy council that he has no plans for reducing emissions in the electricity sector and may disengage with the council altogether on the issue of emissions policy.
It is clear that Angus Taylor is a man on a mission. What’s less clear is whose best interests are driving him.
Richard Taylor also made a submission to the department’s review of how environment laws affect the agriculture sector. His submission called for changes to make the laws more simple and compatible with broadscale agriculture and best-practice weed control.
It’s handy when your family has such a prominent platform on which to express their views and such insight into investment opportunities. Even handier when they get to make and change the rules that directly affect them.
Angus Taylor has previously denied on the record that he intervened in the investigation of the alleged illegal clearing of the critically endangered grasslands on the property near Delegate.
In April, in response to the issue being raised in Senate estimates, a spokesperson for the minister told Guardian Australia: “The minister has not made any representations to federal or state authorities in relation to this investigation.
“But really it’s no surprise considering Angus Taylor has continually argued against climate action and is part of a government that has continually lied about what their emissions data actually shows, which is that emissions are rising and we’re not on track to meet our international climate commitments.”
Apparently this government has a mandate to operate in secret and will continue to do so. (ODT
$80,million Spent like water (ODT)
Guardian Australia reported this week on the mystery surrounding the reason Joyce chose the companies he did for the buybacks. On Friday, Labor raised specific questions about one of the purchases, worth $80m.
On Saturday, Hanson-Young said she would write to the auditor general requesting an urgent audit.
“The auditor has a responsibility to investigate how $80m of taxpayers money was paid for water that doesn’t exist,” she said in a tweet.
It is extraordinary that the profit from Barnaby Joyce’s record payment for Australian water rights, an $80 million payment of taxpayers’ money, found its way to a company in the Cayman Islands which had been set up by Angus Taylor, a company at which Taylor had been a director for six years. Report by Michael West.