News National Greens to force vote on energy bill

Greens to force vote on energy bill

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The Greens say they will force a vote on the Abbott government’s plans to abolish the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, providing the coalition with a first double dissolution election trigger.

Greens leader Christine Milne says she will move this week that the Senate vote on the government’s bill, which faces certain defeat because Labor also opposes scrapping the $10 billion renewable energy initiative.

A vote on the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (Abolition) Bill 2013 will be taken before the July changeover of the Senate, when the Greens and Labor lose control of the upper house.

The Senate has already rejected the legislation, but in March the government rushed it through the lower house in the expectation it would wait until a host of conservative crossbenchers entered the upper house.

Senator Milne said the Greens wanted to put the bill to a second Senate vote immediately, and give Prime Minister Tony Abbott a first trigger needed to call a double dissolution election.

“We reject Tony Abbott’s effort to destroy renewable energy investment in Australia,” she told ABC Television.

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation was set up by the previous Labor government to support renewable energy projects through loans, guarantees and equity investments.