The minister for Indigenous Australians, Linda Burney, is speaking to ABC Radio as she continues her visit alongside the prime minister Anthony Albanese in the Torres Strait consulting on the constitutionally enshrined Indigenous voice to parliament.
Asked what she is trying to find out from Torres Strait Islanders, whether consultation is on the design, Burney responds:
We’re talking to the people of the Torres Strait about the support for a Voice.. and we’re also talking to them about a whole range of other issues.
And they have talked very clearly about the various governance structures they have in place up here in court.. and they’re all things we should consider very deeply as we go forward and talk about the design of the Voice.
It is a region in itself, it is very distinct ..and they see themselves as it was described to us as a minority within a minority.
National electric vehicle strategy to improve affordability and choice
The climate change minister, Chris Bowen, will tell the national EV summit the Albanese government has written to the states and territories inviting them to work together on a national EV strategy, including considering the introduction of vehicle fuel efficiency standards to drive the uptake of cleaner cars.
Fuel efficiency standards set an emissions target for auto manufacturers averaged across all the cars they sell, measured in grams of CO2 released per kilometre driven. Targets are gradually reduced to zero, when they effectively become a ban on new fossil fuel cars. They are in place across about 80% of the global light vehicle market.
Excerpts of Bowen’s speech released to media before the event said the strategy would aim to improve affordability and choice by expanding the local EV market. Only 2% of new cars sold in Australia last year were low-emissions vehicles, compared with 9% globally.
In the extract, Bowen pulled up short of promising mandatory fuel efficiency standards, but said it was time for “an orderly and sensible discussion” about whether they could help improve the supply of EVs and cut both emissions and the cost of running a car. He said Australia was the only OECD country other than Russia to not have introduced vehicle carbon dioxide standards or have them in development.