‘We are living in a nightmare’: New Zealanders say the climate is getting worse
The New Zealand Government has announced a massive carbon tax, the first time a country has done so since 1990, to help pay for the massive upgrade of the country’s energy grid.
The move will help pay down the countrys $4.5 billion debt and help tackle the country ‘s looming debt crisis.
The new $10,000 per household levy will come into effect from July 1.
A tax on carbon emissions is the most controversial of the Government’s new policies, with opponents saying it will be regressive and expensive.
New Zealand is one of the last major developed countries to implement a carbon tax.
But the Government has said it will work with industry to help reduce emissions and keep the economy growing.
The carbon levy is likely to cause headaches for many businesses in New Zealand.
Many businesses rely on imported fossil fuels to generate their electricity.
“The levy will have a big impact on small businesses and households, but it will also have a huge impact on big businesses like multinationals that depend on export-driven growth,” said David Gonsalves, chief economist at Capital Economics.
In New Zealand, a carbon levy will cost $2.70 per tonne of carbon dioxide.
Businesses and consumers will pay about 30 cents more per ton in New York, New Jersey and California.
The levy will be paid by consumers in New South Wales, Tasmania and Victoria.
Some analysts believe the carbon levy would be regressing.
A new tax on emissions would be more effective than any previous tax, because it would target the carbon emitted directly by households rather than the emissions from businesses, Gonsa said.
But the Government said the levy would reduce the cost of electricity and help the economy recover from the debt crisis that has been mounting.
New Zealanders have been paying the price for carbon pollution for decades, according to an OECD study.
It found that since 1990 the cost to New Zealand of its emissions increased by about 40 per cent, and the cost per ton of carbon was about 50 per cent higher.
For the past 20 years the Government had said the carbon tax would be about 25 cents per ton.
Prime Minister Bill English said the new tax would help pay off the country s debt crisis, and to reduce the countryS debt load.
We will ensure that households pay their fair share, and that our economy remains strong,” English said.