Coalition backs ETS just as public opinion turns
Just as Malcolm Turnbull has turned the Liberal Party towards accepting an ETS before the global climate change conference in Copenhagen in December, there has been a turnaround in public support for delaying finalisation of a carbon emissions trading scheme.
And while most people are still prepared to pay higher costs for petrol, electricity and gas to cut greenhouse gas emissions, support drops away rapidly as the expectations rise of higher costs.
According to the latest Newspoll survey, 45 per cent of voters want the Rudd government to delay finalising its Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme until after the Copenhagen conference compared with 41 per cent who said Australia should not wait to see what other nations were doing.
Eight per cent of respondents to the survey, taken exclusively for The Australian last weekend, oppose an ETS outright, taking the total who oppose the scheme or want it delayed to 53 per cent.
In September last year, 61 per cent wanted Australia to act as soon as possible, no matter what other countries were doing, and only 33 per cent wanted to delay or opposed the scheme outright.
So that's a 20% increase in those opposing the ETS or wanting it delayed, and Turnbull does precisely the opposite. Not surprisingly, his popularity is at rock bottom, and the writing is on the wall for his leadership…
The Opposition Leader's about-face over passing the ETS before Copenhagen and commitments from the big carbon emitters -- the US, China and India -- came as he slipped to his lowest standing against the Prime Minister, a worse position than former leader Brendan Nelson when he was replaced.
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