Wheels fall off cash for clunkers

LOCAL car enthusiasts are pleased to hear the federal government has scrapped its controversial $429 million “cash for clunkers” scheme.

The green scheme, also known as the cleaner car rebate, saw $2000 handed out to pre-1995 car owners when they traded their vehicles in to encourage the purchase of newer and “cleaner” vehicles.

Southern Cross Street Cruisers Car Club member George Georgiou is pleased to see the government has diverted the money to cover flood damage.

He felt the scheme only benefited wealthier citizens who had the money to trade in an old car and buy a new one.

“I’m totally against it [cash for clunkers],” he said.

“Not everyone has money to spend on new cars.

“It’s a dirty, sneaky rort.”

As the owner of a 1957 Chevrolet, Mr Georgiou said older cars could often be a better and more reliable option, regardless of the greenhouse gas emission difference.

The scrapped scheme has also been criticised by Gnoo Blas Classic Car Club president Denis Gregory.

“I don’t think older cars are really doing any more damage” he said.

“People don’t drive them nearly as much.

“I think the scheme was probably pulled out of the air at the time.”

Orange Greens candidate Stephen Nugent said it was disappointing to see money being taken out of many of Labor’s green initiatives to fund the flood damage.

“I personally support any initiative effective in reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” he said.

“Perhaps there was a more effective way to use the funding to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, though.”

The Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association executive director Stuart Charity said there were better ways for the government to make cars environmentally cleaner.

This includes a five minute check using diagnostic equipment that can be found at many garages to test emissions.

“If emissions testing was part of mandatory annual road worthy and safety checks, Australian families would be making a huge contribution to emissions reductions ... and they would be safer on the road,” Mr Charity said.

erin.somerville@

ruralpress.com

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