New Australia Prime Minister Backs Ousted Abbott's Carbon Policy

  • Turnbull won a leadership vote to replace prime minister
  • Abbott's government in 2014 scrapped emission trading system

Hours after ousting Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Monday, fellow Liberal Party member Malcolm Turnbull pledged to maintain the country’s climate policy.

“The climate policy is one that has been very well-designed,” Turnbull said during a press conference Monday at Parliament House in Canberra. “It was a very, very good piece of work.” Liberal Party lawmakers elected him as their leader in a late-night ballot, making him Australia’s new prime minister.

Turnbull served as party leader until 2009, when Abbott replaced him. Turnbull’s then-support for a federal emissions trading system helped elevate Abbott through a leadership ballot. Abbott became prime minister in 2013, after campaigning to scrap the system.

In 2014 the Australian federal government ditched the country’s carbon tax, which initially charged polluters A$23 ($16.42) a ton of greenhouse gases emitted. The government instead installed an incentives-based program for voluntary emission cutters.

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