Summary

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The majority voted in favour of a motion to read the bill for a second time.(Read more about the stages a bill must pass through here. )

The motion was phrased like this: "That these bills be now read a second time but the Senate calls on the Government to recognise the scientific expert consensus regarding climate change and that the repeal of the carbon tax must be accompanied by the introduction of serious and comprehensive policies to address climate change."

This means that the majority agree with the main idea of the bill, subject to the proviso contained in the motion.

Background to the bills

The Clean Energy Legislation (Carbon Tax Repeal) Bill 2013 and related bills were introduced as a package to remove the carbon pricing mechanism, which was introduced by the Australian Labor Party while in government. The Coalition described the mechanism as a “carbon tax” and removing it was a key policy platform during the 2013 election.(You can read more about the Coalition's policy to remove the carbon price here. )

The carbon pricing mechanism commenced on 1 July 2012.(For more information on the carbon pricing mechanism and how it works, please see the Clean Energy Regulator’s website.) It is an emissions trading scheme that puts a price on carbon emissions. It applies to “liable entities” (a group that includes companies that emit a high level of greenhouse gases). Initially the price of carbon is fixed by the mechanism but from 1 July 2015 the price will be set by the market, though the Labor Government did announce plans to bring this forward to 1 July 2014 just before they were defeated by the Coalition in the 2013 election.

The ten other related bills are:

Votes Passed by a large majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 0 Yes 9 No
Richard Di Natale Victoria No
Sarah Hanson-Young SA No
Scott Ludlam WA No
Christine Milne Tasmania No
Lee Rhiannon NSW No
Rachel Siewert WA No
Larissa Waters Queensland No
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania No
Penny Wright SA No
Australian Labor Party (73% turnout) 22 Yes 0 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania Yes
Doug Cameron NSW Yes
Kim Carr Victoria Yes
Jacinta Collins Victoria Yes
Stephen Conroy Victoria Yes
Sam Dastyari NSW Yes
Don Farrell SA Yes
Mark Furner Queensland Yes
Alex Gallacher SA Yes
Sue Lines WA Yes
Joe Ludwig Queensland Yes
Kate Lundy ACT Yes
Gavin Marshall Victoria Yes
Claire Moore Queensland Yes
Deborah O'Neill NSW Yes
Nova Peris NT Yes
Helen Polley Tasmania Yes
Lisa Singh Tasmania Yes
Glenn Sterle WA Yes
Mehmet Tillem Victoria Yes
Anne Urquhart Tasmania Yes
Penny Wong SA Yes
Mark Bishop WA Absent
Carol Brown Tasmania Absent
John Faulkner NSW Absent
Anne McEwen SA Absent
Jan McLucas Queensland Absent
Louise Pratt WA Absent
Ursula Stephens NSW Absent
Lin Thorp Tasmania Absent
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party Yes
John Madigan Victoria Democratic Labor Party Yes
Stephen Parry Tasmania Deputy President Absent
Nick Xenophon SA Independent Yes
Liberal Party (85% turnout) 23 Yes 0 No
Eric Abetz Tasmania Yes
Christopher Back WA Yes
Cory Bernardi SA Yes
George Brandis Queensland Yes
David Bushby Tasmania Yes
Michaelia Cash WA Yes
Richard Colbeck Tasmania Yes
Mathias Cormann WA Yes
Sean Edwards SA Yes
Alan Eggleston WA Yes
David Fawcett SA Yes
Mitch Fifield Victoria Yes
David Johnston WA Yes
Helen Kroger Victoria Yes
Ian Macdonald Queensland Yes
Brett Mason Queensland Yes
Marise Payne NSW Yes
Michael Ronaldson Victoria Yes
Anne Ruston SA Yes
Scott Ryan Victoria Yes
Zed Seselja ACT Yes
Arthur Sinodinos NSW Yes
Dean Smith WA Yes
Simon Birmingham SA Absent
Sue Boyce Queensland Absent
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW Absent
Bill Heffernan NSW Absent
National Party (80% turnout) 4 Yes 0 No
Ron Boswell Queensland Yes
Bridget McKenzie Victoria Yes
Barry O'Sullivan Queensland Yes
John Williams NSW Yes
Fiona Nash NSW Absent
John Hogg Queensland President Yes
Totals (82% turnout) 53 Yes – 9 No