The Gillard Government is pleased to announce that it intends to appoint the former Reserve Bank Governor and former Treasury Secretary Bernie Fraser as Chairman of the new Climate Change Authority (CCA).
The CCA is to be established by legislation as an independent body to provide expert advice on key aspects of the carbon pricing mechanism.
Mr Fraser – who has indicated his willingness to take up the position – is uniquely qualified to chair the CCA.
He has decades of experience in public economic policy and business having held the positions of Secretary of the Treasury from 1984 to 1989, and Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia from 1989 to 1996. Mr Fraser was previously Director of the National Energy Office from 1981 to 1984.
Mr Fraser is currently Chairman of Members Equity Bank. Until recently, he was a director of two of Australia's largest superannuation funds, AustralianSuper and Cbus, positions he held for 15 years.
When the carbon pricing mechanism moves to a flexible price emissions trading scheme, the Government will put annual caps on the amount of carbon pollution that can be released into the atmosphere by entities covered by the carbon price.
The CCA will play an important role in the governance of the carbon pricing mechanism.
One of the CCA's responsibilities will be to make recommendations to the Government on future pollution caps under the carbon pricing mechanism. These recommendations will have regard to, among other matters:
The Government will make final decisions on these pollution caps, based on the recommendations of the CCA.
The CCA will also provide advice on the performance of the carbon price and other climate change initiatives and will track progress towards Australia's pollution reduction targets.
It will conduct regular public reviews and its reports will be made public.
The CCA will complete its first review – which will provide recommendations on the carbon pricing mechanism's first five years of pollution caps – by February 2014.
Mr Fraser will bring to this new role an unparalleled combination of business, financial and economics experience and a long history of contributing to responsible implementation of economic reform.
The Government will appoint another eight members to the CCA. They will have experience in climate science, economics, emissions trading, climate change mitigation, investment and business.
10 July 2011