Labor reveals its carbon cynicism

By pulling out of negotiations with major carbon emitters, Julia Gillard has all but given up the chance to reach a 5 per cent emissions reduction by 2020.

Labor's backflip on the 'contract for closure' process that aimed to shut down our most polluting brown-coal generators has thrown carbon politics into the sharpest relief yet – and it's clear the three main parties are trying to achieve very different outcomes.

The policies are founded in idealism (Labor), extreme idealism (Greens) and cynical pragmatism (Coalition).

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