That apparently is the assumption of the paper's editors. An article that discussed the impact of the debate on global warming on this weekend's election told readers of a study pushed by proponents of inaction which:
"estimated that the 45 percent reduction in carbon emissions proposed by the opposition Labor Party would cost the economy 167,000 jobs and 264 billion Australian dollars, or $181 million."
In case readers did not know how important 167,000 jobs are to Australia, it is equal to a bit less than 1.3 percent of its current workforce. (The calculation of job loss in these models is typically associated with a reduction in pay due to carbon taxes, which means fewer people will decide to work.) The loss of GDP is equal to 0.8 percent of projected GDP, according to the model.
Since it is likely that most NYT readers have no idea how large Australia's workforce is, or the size of its economy, it might have been useful to include context that would make these numbers meaningful.