Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne has welcomed news that new Labor Leader Bill Shorten will defend the price on pollution and says Prime Minister Tony Abbott has no mandate to dismantle it.
"The writing is on the wall in terms of extreme fires, floods, droughts and heatwaves. Tony Abbott may have a mandate to lead the government of the nation, but he doesn't have one to stand by and watch it swelter and burn," Senator Milne said.
"When Tony Abbott and Greg Hunt say they have a mandate to remove the price on pollution, what they are actually saying is they have a mandate to do nothing about global warming. They are wrong.
"Without our price on pollution Australia has no effective action to reduce emissions and build jobs in clean energy. By attempting to dismantle the price on pollution Tony Abbott is attempting to destroy the only effective policy to reduce the extreme weather and droughts that loom over the next half century.
"Given extraordinary remarks made by coal billionaire Clive Palmer, that he wants polluters to get all their money back as fires rage over NSW and Queensland sinks into drought conditions, will Prime Minister Abbott make the community pay for fire and heat damage and fill the coffers of the coal industry at the same time?
"Mr Abbott never debates the impacts of global warming. Instead he has deliberately confused the issue with the honesty or otherwise of the Labor Party and cost of living.
"The real costs of living will be paid by the community in the face of extreme weather events, trebling death rates from heat waves and loss of infrastructure and housing as sea levels rise and storm surges destroy homes."