The nation’s worst polluters would be taxed, and the funds redistributed to the nation’s voting public, under a bold new carbon tax plan released by the University of New South Wales.
The Australian Climate Dividend Plan (ACDP) involves placing a tax on the emission of carbon dioxide in a market-based approach that the university says would make energy in Australia more affordable and reliable, by an introduction of a universal carbon tax of $20-$50 per ton for all carbon emissions in Australia.
UNSW’s Economics Professor Richard Holden says the ACDP is modelled on similar proposals developed in the US by the Climate Leadership Council.
“It’s a method we know works – albeit sometimes a hard sell. The key to our proposal is that it not only provides strong market-based incentives to reduce our carbon emissions, it addresses the economic well-being of low-income Australians – previously a barrier to developing a meaningful policy response to climate change.”
The report serves to address legitimate concerns about what effective action on climate change would mean for the economic well-being of low-income Australians, their access to affordable transport and energy, and the competitiveness of Australian industry.
“Our carbon dividend approach bridges the left-right divide on climate policy,” says Holden. “It is at once conservative and progressive and provides a workable solution that will appeal to all sides of the political spectrum.”