Impact of car­bon tax on you

How much will it cost and how does it work?

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - AN­GELIQUE PAT­TER­SON

WHILE some see it as a load of hot air, the re­al­ity is the car­bon tax which took ef­fect na­tion­wide on Sunday will af­fect ev­ery­one.

The car­bon tax was in­tro­duced by the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment in a bid to re­duce Aus­tralia’s car­bon pol­lu­tion by 159 mil­lion tonnes per year - the same as tak­ing 45 mil­lion cars off the road.

Only 500 of the coun­try’s largest pol­luters will be taxed at $23 per tonne of car­bon emit­ted, how­ever, th­ese large com­pa­nies have al­ready started pass­ing the costs down the line to the con­sumer.

Av­er­age house­hold costs are ex­pected to rise by $9.90 per week as a result.

The cost of freight and trans­port has al­ready in­creased, petrol and gas not used for ve­hi­cles has in­creased and elec­tric­ity is set to rise in Queens­land by 13.1 per cent.

To counter this, the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment has pro­vided fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance to nine out of 10 house­holds through per­sonal in­come tax cuts and in­creases in pen­sions and al­lowances, as well as other mea­sures.

This in­cludes tripling the tax free thresh­old to $18,200, which will in­crease again in 2015 when the car­bon tax is con­verted to an emis­sions trad­ing scheme.

The emis­sions trad­ing scheme is when the Gov­ern­ment puts a cap on the to­tal amount of pol­lu­tion that can be re­leased each year and busi­nesses will com­pete for and trade per­mits and prices.

The tax will not ap­ply to agri­cul­ture and farm­ers will get cred­its for each tonne of car­bon pol­lu­tion which can be stored or re­duced on the land.

Petrol, light on-road ve­hi­cles and trans­port fuel is ex­cluded from the car­bon tax but heavy trans­port will start pay­ing car­bon tax in 2014.

Small busi­nesses will get an as­set write-off con­ces­sion to help lower costs and the in­stant as­set write-off for small busi­nesses with a turnover of less than $ 2 mil­lion a year will rise to $6500.

The tax is ex­pected to raise around $24.5 bil­lion over three years and over half of that will go back to house­holds in the form of in­creases in fam­ily pay­ments, pen­sions and tax cuts and those on a pen­sion or are self-re­funded re­tirees will get up to $338 ex­tra per year.

How will the car­bon tax af­fect your busi­ness? Email the Gazette at gazette@tpd.newsltd.com.au

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