Whyalla steel works. (File image. This may have disappeared by now.)
Photo © 2008 AAP One/Wildlight/John Frederick White Australia
The Federal Government’s Carbon Pricing Scheme, commonly known as the Carbon Tax, kicks in today.
The scheme involves 294 of Australia’s biggest polluters paying $23 for every tonne of carbon-based greenhouse gas they emit.
From the revenue generated by the tax, income taxes will be reduced, pensions raised, and households below certain thresholds will receive compensation for costs passed on to consumers.
Assistance has also been offered to help high-level emitters reduce their emissions.
The official line can be found at the Government’s Clean Energy Future website.
The PM hit the ground running, saying that Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s promises to revoke the tax would amount to nothing, and that the scheme was here to stay – likening it to her own distaste for the GST when it was introduced by the Howard Government.
Mr Abbott took to Twitter with gusto, linking to a new Liberal Party ad pushing the Opposition’s line that the carbon tax was “built on a lie.”
Mr Abbott’s prediction that South Australian steel-making town Whyalla would be “wiped off the map” would appear not to have come true – yet – but you can keep an eye on the unfolding situation via webcam.
Leading opposition climate change sceptic Barnaby Joyce was keeping a low profile after a few controversial emissions of his own in the Senate last week.
Treasurer Wayne Swan went shopping with the same shopping list he used yesterday, delightedly tweeting that there was no rise in prices. The rest of us were left pondering what kind of man goes through a whole jar of Vegemite in a day.
Aaaand so it goes. Sing along!
Interestingly, the Mining Resources Rent Tax, or Mining Tax, also starts today. Why isn’t there such a big fuss over that one any more?