The current Australian federal government promised
no carbon tax and now they are introducing a carbon tax. The tax is not to help the environment because the tax is nothing to do with reducing the addition of carbon to the atmosphere, it is just a tax to raise money to be spent on secret schemes the government refuses to announce. The government is a fraud both for breaking their promise, in fact breaking most of the few promises they did make, and for misrepresenting a money raising tax as having environmental benefits.
Environmental change has happened on Earth for 3.6 billion years. We have a lot of history we can use to plan environmental change. We know that removing trees for agriculture is contributing ten times more carbon to the atmosphere than all the cars on the road. The Australian federal government carbon tax is aimed only at cars and similar carbon sources. The tax does nothing to reduce land clearing. In fact the tax specifically excludes agriculture.
Existing carbon taxes
We already pay carbon taxes in Australia. For example, we pay a carbon tax on petrol and diesel. The existing fuel taxes (there are several) are applied full strength to non renewable petroleum based fuels and at a reduced rate to renewable vegetable based fuels. The difference between the two rates is an environmentally sound carbon tax because it is based on non renewable carbon.
Note that the new federal government tax will tax renewable carbon fuels at the same rate as non renewable carbon sources and do exactly nothing to push people to change from non renewable fuels to renewable fuels.
The existing tax encourages people to buy smaller, more fuel efficient cars, but at the same time, in NSW, the Australian state with the largest population, the state government is slowly banning the use of trains and forcing people into cars. Each year cars become a fraction of a percent more efficient but in NSW hundreds of thousands of new cars go on the road, the distances we travel when commuting are rapidly increasing, the slower traffic increases fuel consumption, and the long periods we are stuck at traffic lights forces us to use air conditioning on trips where we did not previously need it. The total consumption of non renewable carbon fuels is increasing far faster than the combined benefit of increased fuel efficiency and the switch to renewable fuels.
The existing carbon tax encourages people to switch from petroleum based fuels to
natural gas despite the gas being an unnatural petroleum fuel polluting our atmosphere with additional carbon. If the government was serious about the environment, if the government was anything other than a bunch of cynical liars, they would ban the use of the term
natural gas for petroleum gases and reserve
natural gas exclusively for natural gases including methane recovered from biological processes. If the current government were anything other than pirates building their own personal fortune at the expense of Australia, they would tax all petroleum gases at the same rate as other petroleum products.
State government versus federal government
Some of our state governments have policies to improve the efficiency of our resource usage. Our federal government is just making things up day by day and only makes a change when it includes an increase in taxes.
The Victorian state government, the second largest state based on population, builds new railway lines along side new freeways. At the federal level, the government builds new roads but never new rail.
The state governments started all the moves to biofuels. The previous federal government, the opposite to the current one, jumped on some biofuel plans and encouraged them through different tax levels. The current federal government opposed the biofuel initiatives and is going to introduce a carbon tax to disadvantage the renewable biofuels by decreasing the difference in price.
No credit where credit is due
The federal government carbon tax does nothing to reward people who reduce production of non renewable carbon. The new tax is purely to raise revenue and some of the revenue will be used to subsidise the consumption of coal by the biggest burners of coal. The subsidies could be enough to increase consumption.
The federal government's new revenue raising tax does nothing to subsidise the manufacture of alternatives. Repeated federal government ignoring of alternative energy sources has shut down our manufacturing plants. We can no longer manufacturer solar panels or any of the other alternatives so useful across Australia. Instead we have to import all the materials and equipment from countries that have absolutely not carbon emission policies. We are not reducing carbon emissions, we are just exporting them overseas along with our jobs, our money, and all that transportation of the raw resources and finished product is actually increasing the total carbon emission. The Australian federal government will brag about some fake local reduction in carbon emissions and hide the fact that the total world production has increased due to their actions.
The tax is based purely on a vote grabbing deal between the federal Labor party and the federal Greens, who have absolutely no interest in making our environment greener. The Greens did have one green policy on one issue many years ago and everything since is just marketing lies to grab votes. The Greens had, back in the days when they were more interested in the environment than grabbing power, had a policy to oppose a dam to protect a river valley in Tasmania. The dam was to produce electricity for an expanding population. The Greens stopped the dam but never offered an alternative. Huge power shortages and price increases were the result. Industry shut down in that area. People lost jobs. Consumption of non renewable energy resources continued to increase. The result was a disaster. At the time, while the Greens were sitting around letting Tasmania burn, Australia had manufacturers manufacturing sources of renewable energy. The Greens let all those manufacturers shut down. All the Greens ever do is oppose change without ever offering a positive alternative or contributing an original idea. Australia really needs a political party interested in protecting our environment and contributing to a sustainable future.
Broken Hill is an example of a city that decided to replace their diesel power source with wind power and are close to succeeding. The new Silverton wind farm, www.silvertonwindfarm.com.au is an example of what the federal government should be subsidising with their theft-in-the-name-of-carbon tax. Think big. Instead the federal government treats Australians like a bunch of nasty children and sets out to whip us with financial sticks. Instead we will get the federal government flooding endless committees with their friends and relatives. Instead we will get loads of negative actions and nothing positive.
One other distinct characteristic of this federal government and related previous governments. They only ever listen to people from overseas. Australia exports all our expertise because so many Labor governments, from the Whitlam government through the Hawke, Keating, and Rudd governments, have refused to listen to or support Australians and have flocked overseas on any excuse for a trip then brought back foreign ideas ranging from the outright stupid to things that might work somewhere else in the world but are total wrong for Australia. The same Labor governments, and some preceding Labor governments have destroyed Australian companies in order to suck up to America. The Labor party is supposed to represent workers. The Whitlam Labor government sacked 600,000 Australians by destroying their jobs. They continue the same mission right through to today. Their carbon tax will destroy a massive number of jobs in our manufacturing industry and send all that manufacturing to countries where there are no environmental protections. The total world pollution of the atmosphere by carbon will increase, not decrease.
The cynical pirates in the current federal government are introducing a new tax to make themselves rich and offer absolutely no benefits to the world or Australian environment. We should vote against them, their party, the Greens they suck up to, and find politicians to implement measures to actually reduce carbon pollution from non renewable sources.