History will remember the Rudd/Gillard government’s first term in office for two things: its commendable management of the global financial crisis and its shambolic mismanagement of climate policy. Gillard’s challenge now is to erase the memories of the past and demonstrate that Labor has learnt from its mistakes.
The centrepiece of Labor’s first term climate agenda was the promise to introduce an emissions trading scheme -- the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) -- by 2010. In addition to this, it undertook to create several complementary programs on energy efficiency, renewable energy and energy innovation. Despite having a reasonable initial framework, almost all of these programs floundered.