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Carbon tax ‘just revenue raising’, says Linc Energy chief Peter Bond

| Sourced From Theaustralian |

LINC Energy chief executive Peter Bond does not believe the time is right for a carbon tax.

Mr Bond laments the call made last week by BHP Billiton chief executive Marius Kloppers for the federal government to impose one.

Mr Bond said Australia should not act on a tax until India, China and the US “show their colours”.

“A country the size of Australia, with 1 per cent or less of the world’s CO2 production, really shouldn’t be setting the agenda,” he said yesterday after opening Linc’s new offices in Adelaide.

Mr Bond also questioned the point of imposing an originally suggested carbon tax of about $10 or $12 a tonne of CO2, arguing it was not enough to make anyone change their ways.

“All it does is add a cost to the consumer that will be carried forward because nobody can absorb it,” he said.

“So the cost of power goes up, the cost of oil goes up and so on and for no reason. You have to wonder in that case it’s just revenue generating, it’s not a genuine attempt at mitigating carbon.”

Mr Bond said “a series of answers” were needed to address climate change and not a “quick fix” carbon tax.

He believed Mr Kloppers’ comments were reflecting on an “inevitability of some sort of carbon-tax environment or carbon-managed environment”.

“Yes in the next three to five years we need to set ourselves up for some sort of low carbon environment,” he said.

“Is that a tax? What is that? What’s it look like? I don’t think now’s the time to do it.”

Linc last month struck the largest deal on record with an Indian company through the sale of its Galilee Basin coal deposits in Queensland to the Adani Group in a deal worth up to $3 billion over 20 years.

Linc is planning to develop a power plant near Orroroo, 260km north of Adelaide, using underground coal gasification.

“We see South Australia as our primary focus for commercialisation in this country,” Mr Bond said.

The process produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions than conventional coal-fired power plants.

Also yesterday, Linc chairman Brian Johnson announced he would stand down and resign from the board at the company’s annual general meeting in November.

Mr Johnson said he was leaving the company after four years to concentrate on other business interests overseas.

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