Australian Senate Sinks Carbon Trading Scheme

Dec 4 2009 | 10:28am ET

On the eve of the U.N. climate change talks in Copenhagen, the Australian Senate has defeated Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s plan to implement a carbon trading system.

The Senate voted 41-33 against the bill, which would have limited industrial emissions of greenhouse gases and created pollution permits that could be bought and sold.

The defeat came after two weeks of debate, during which the conservative Liberals, the main opposition party, at first agreed to back the bill then on Tuesday dumped their leader and withdrew their support.

The cap and trade system was considered key to the Rudd government meeting its commitment to cut emissions by 5% to 25% – depending on whether a Copenhagen deal was struck – by 2020.


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