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Carbon tax complaints declining: competition watchdog
27/07/2012 - The competition watchdog is now dealing with an average of 45 complaints per day about Labor's controversial carbon tax — down from 63 a day when it first started.
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) says businesses are making an effort to ensure their staff aren't misleading customers and it expects the downward trend to continue.
Chairman Rod Sims on Thursday said there'd been just over 1260 carbon price-related complaints from when the tax started on July 1 until Tuesday this week.
There were 630 in the first 10 days of the scheme's operation.
Sims insists 45 complaints a day is "not large" considering the watchdog received 900 complaints a day concerning all other matters during July.
To date the ACCC has sent warning or "educative" letters to 30 businesses.
It's received court enforceable undertakings from Brumby's and refrigeration company Equipserve and less serious informal undertakings from two solar panel businesses.
Further actions are expected in the coming weeks.
The competition watchdog has received allegations of misleading carbon price claims against hairdressers, cafes, supermarkets and dry cleaners.
But the energy, landfill, refrigerant and building sectors continue to generate the most complaints.
Many potentially misleading claims had been made by staff members who've jumped to conclusions.
"A stray comment from an employee that casually refers to price increases as being carbon related when they are not could result in a complaint to the ACCC," Sims said in a statement.
"(But) businesses that make a good faith attempt at calculating the effect of the carbon price have nothing to fear from the ACCC.
"Businesses in general are making an effort to ensure that their staff are aware of the importance of not misleading consumers."
Kermit | 27/07/2012 10:51 1
I am not amused! The government introduced the Carbon Tax on an international scam and misleading science...NOW it is an offence to speak out and advertise the fact that the cost of a service or product will be price adversely affected by the tax. There are now less complaints, does this mean the sheep are now back to grazing on the bullsh** and accept there lot. I accept there will be natural price rises, but when the cost of power (up another 20%) or other restrictions and regulations drive the price up as a result of the tax, is it is fair and reasonable to inform the public or does "big brother" now have that much power. We no longer have the right to exercise free speech?
Geoff Thomas | 27/07/2012 15:52 2
Dear Kermit, I fear you have become a victim of your own belief system, you believe there is no global warming, therefore there should not be a carbon tax, and somewhere in there you have swallowed some one else's justification that a carbon tax will destroy the economy, (despite several countries around the world and 8 American states having done it for years with no discernible damage at all) so now, when folk lie about the carbon tax in order to sell, you find your self obliged to defend them. False advertising is not free speech, it is thieving. Look at your assertion, that it is an offence to speak out and advertise the fact that the cost of a service or product will be price adversely affected by the tax. Is that what is happening? No, the government has calculated how much it will affect folk and initiated and already paid much compensation for that increase, the bone of contention is the amount, - you suggest 20%, several companies have added such to their invoices for all sorts of stuff, when in fact the 10% is added on to the price of Producing electricity, not the cost experienced by the end user. Coal fired electricity used to cost 4 cents/kilowatt/hour, it may have gone up a smidgin, although Campbell Newman's estimation of 8 cents for the retailer, - ie electrical monopsonies like Ergon, Energex, (Qld) include the cable and losses charges, "wheeling" charges, which all claim is the bigger cost, - so 10% of 4 cents .4 cents, or even if it was 10% 0f 8 cents, .8 of a cent, is not going to add 20% to a bill where folk are Already paying 20 cents plus per kW/hr, - on the conservative figure of 20 cents and the maximum purchase price of 8 cents, the price would go up .8 cents, to 20.8 cents, not even 5%, and the power suppliers are talking of wheeling charges of 8%, long overdue because poles and cables have not been kept to full maintenance so that the various state governments could sell off their electricity networks so that they could pay their burgeoning bureaucracies. So really, more like 2% of the actual bill, then 2% increase in the price of the amount of electricity required to make products, a varying contribution, high for smelting aluminium, low for growing ornamental plants, but always on the cost of the electricity, not the cost of the aluminium, - it is those shysters who, like you, exaggerate ridiculously, then apply the increase percentage to the RETAIL price, who are thieves, in contravention of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, once called the Trade Practices Act. Because the results of your bigotry, (unless you are being paid by the oil companies like many of these "Think Tanks") doesn't get you money, you are safe from the law, but not safe from folk who read your posts and see the fallacies therein.
Kermit | 27/07/2012 16:34 3
Geoff, your electricity bill must come from a different world to ours....I am not a bigot or any of your other suggestions of my mental capability, I am a well researched, open minded observer who researches all the information and science before following the crowd! Yes, you are right Global Temperature does increase and decrease, the effects of mankind on this and his consumption of fossil fuels contributes less than 1% total to the Carbon content of our atmosphere, stratosphere and ionosphere, this does not justify a new TAX! Simple as that, Global Warming is linked to Solar activity - not man's use of resources and the records show this has been so for thousands if not millions of years....mankind (we don't make a difference) and his use of resources is insignificant and less than 1% of total gas mix changes. We should spend our scarce dollars on finding ways to cope with change and reducing the spending on weapons of mass destruction...NOT Carbon. Get used to it and study how nature is changing, stop scaring the populous and wasting money trying to reduce Carbon emissions (fear to control the masses, it's working a treat). Even the UN scientists admit the whole Global Warming propaganda was just that; a bloody scam!....How long will it take for people to wake up or will they wallow in self denial because they are embarrassed that they were conned and now governments have a right to Tax us because we were stupid enough to believe the bullsh*t and that is OK?....I rest my case......
VG | 28/07/2012 12:22 4
Mr Thomas, even if global warming is as some scientists claim, caused by man, Oz only creates 1% of it, and claims are we will reduce our emission by 2020 by 5%. I cannot understand why we create all this damage to our economy and disharmony in the country for almost no change globally. That is where the real lie is, that we will change anything with the tax, the claim on the news and political hype every day is that we are the heros saving the world with this action. What a load of rubbish, the maths is simple. 5% of 1% change to carbon emission is almost nothing globally, the whole set up is a lie and a scam.
Geoff Thomas | 2/08/2012 16:29 5
Kermit, 1-08, you have still got your old fascination for denying Climate Change, but now you say it is not human caused, - this is in line with the Global Warming Denier movement (mainly oil industry funded) all over the world, - one tenet proves untenable, retreat to the next line of defence until it too becomes untenable, - is this a war or wisdom seeking? The major initial cause of increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is recent massive forest clearing, - visible from outer space, as was before only the great wall of China, - Humans cleared that forest, mainly white western humans or their employees, and it is remarkable how many checks and balances the environment has had to mitigate the consequences of the damage, - mechanisms in the ocean to absorb carbon, (although increasing acidity and threatening coral reefs) initial higher growth rates in some forests as higher carbon concentrations helped those plants that could benefit, (although that process, alas, seems to have finished) and huge "coldness" reserves in the worlds oceans and the portion of the worlds water stored as ice. However, despite these huge reserves, the warming continues, - most of the high mountain Glaciers have retreated or gone, the deep ocean temperatures, (with some exceptions, but for how long?) are gradually rising, - and we live on a planet 3/4s covered by water, - the temperature of the ice in arctic and antarctic realms is rising, - sure the ice is not universally melting yet, the temperature has not quite reached melting point, - and here we all need to be aware of the WAIS, the Western Antarctic Ice Shield, a left-over from the last ice age that should really have melted but didn't, and wouldn't have except for the reversal of a gradual cooling was halted by human activity. The WAIS is a huge block of 1km high ice, ( 2.2 million km3) resting on 3 small islands, - most of it is above sea level but accessible to the ocean, so if the sea gets just a bit warmer, it may collapse as did the Antarctic Peninsular, (that little curl up from Antarctica towards South America,) a few years ago, but the WAIS would give up to 5 metres of ocean rise all over the world, and the WAIS is becoming more active, ice rising in temperature, Glaciers speeding up or changing their flows, the ice shelves, which block the glaciers from charging into the sea, are generally declining and huge quantities of this melting water is already adding to Global sea level rises, - thankfully small at this time! This is a significant threat, you coastal cities and suburbs. So, now Kermit says it is natural, yes, if you clear huge forests, carbon dioxide goes into the atmosphere and naturally the temperature rises, that can be argued to be natural, but if we had not cleared the forests, or at least had harvested them sustainably, then you probably would not have this “natural” global warming, but now that we have, and also added to it the huge amount of fossil fuels we are burning, more and more, (long overtaking the tree clearing) the Carbon Dioxide percentage in the atmosphere is increasing dramatically. (from 280ppm pre industrial to 395ppm now)I don’t believe you can de-couple these 2 arguments, measured increase in Carbon Dioxide, and measured provable long term warming, no matter how many Lord Moncktons you trot out. Regarding your electricity account, I am sure the basic parameters are identical to mine, thanks to the ACCC, my argument in my previous post is exactly correct, please don’t pretend otherwise unless you have solid specific proof.
Geoff Thomas | 2/08/2012 19:14 6
VG If our Oz creates 1%, but our population is 0.32% then we individually are responsible for causing more than three times as much global warming as the average human, - should we say that other people should take responsibility for our bad? Who will have the courage to say, " I take the duty, implied from my rights".? How can we save the world other than we start with our self?
Geoff Thomas | 2/08/2012 19:58 7
VG, what I meant to include was a notice in the local Tafe, when I learnt welding, "Your mother is not enrolled in this tech, you will have to learn to pick up after your self" Cheers, Geoff.
VG | 2/08/2012 21:11 8
Geoff;That per capita issue is a protagonists red herring, it is what we produce as a group that counts. of course with such a small population, the per head rate will be high because we do things, if we don't do anything it will be low, or if we all lived in Tasmania it would be low, too.
Kermit | 2/08/2012 21:47 9
Mr Thomas, you are an excellent example of the success of the propaganda machine. You actually believe these numbers and still interpreting the skewed data of the few scientists who are still paid to sign off on this fallacy. Global Warming has risen ever so slightly as a result of mankind and his activities over the past 1000 years (the temperature actually fell for the 50 years after WWII), and has risen again in line with solar activity, just like it has for the past millenium. If man stopped using fossil fuels today, it would make no difference to the temperature graph of the next 1000 years. Natural phenomena like volcanoes pump more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in three months than man produces in a century...the science and facts are out there take time to do the research.... a TAX will not alter Climate Change, the planets care about money, Tax alters the ability of people to meet their basic needs. I agree with reforestation, we need more trees to maintain the species who rely on them for food and shelter. The big problem with middle class Australians is that they have not come to terms with their short term capacity to keep this country running at a wealthy pace while we are under severe threat from excessive TAX regimes, there is a limit to the amount of water you can remove from a well!
Geoff Thomas | 3/08/2012 12:13 10
Sorry VG, I can't see the logic, the problem threatens everyone in the world, the more countries involved the more likely other countries will be involved also, the attitude that other people should be doing the work of Australians is childish, - is that what you think Australians should be? I admit other countries have childish attitudes also, but two wrongs don't make a right, the only mature response to Global Warming is to do something to reduce it. Countries which already have some form of carbon tax, CO2 emission reduction measures etc. include, America, - 10 states, 9 with the RGGI and California, China, several states, 2015 national and currently installed more renewables than the rest of the world combined, Finland, since 1990, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, fuel and packaging, Europe ,- cap and trade, UK, Petrol plus levy, India, - on coal, plus huge renewable expenditure, South Korea, - in 2008 Canada, - 3 provinces, and Australia. Several other countries plan to introduce 1 soon, eg Japan.(wind kept going all through the Tsunami etc) ref. http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/1492651/Factbox-Carbon-taxes-around-the-world Interestingly the prophesied economic disasters from Carbon tax did not happen in any of those countries.
VG | 3/08/2012 17:41 11
GT. Its about scale effect, more people on the same block of dirt will will use less energy per head, and is an unfair comparison, take a house with one person and with 4, they don't use 4 times as much, something like twice as much. We don't need to lead the world, that's just to pat yourself on the back to the world, and saying look at me, while they say you silly goose go for it. It is all just stupid while the economy goes bankrupt if we didn't have big holes in the ground we would be beside Greece, jobs are disappearing at an enormous rate while we argue about this rubbish, we can look after own rubbish but not everyone elses as well, which this silly nonsense is trying to do. As the hype goes, "we are doing this to stop global warming", not enough to stop anything globally, but bankrupting ourselves for nothing.
Geoff Thomas | 4/08/2012 18:50 12
Dear VG, who cares about a scale effect, if our grand children may have a brutal life because we, who have the power, are not adult. As you should have seen from my earlier post, countries or states who have carbon taxes etc have not gone bankrupt, hello, they have not gone bankrupt or even suffered, where are you coming from with this childish selfish foolery? Just looking after our own rubbish is fine, and maybe we should start looking at why if we didn't have huge holes in the ground, (which sooner or later will have nothing valuable in them anymore) our economy would fail, - are you saying our economy is stuffed and we should pollute as much as possible to stave off the reality of that? Wouldn't it be better to leave off all the political slinging and look at what is really wrong? - and possible ways we could go to fix it?
Kermit | 4/08/2012 19:45 13
Mr Thomas, if there was a problem that we as human beings could affect to change the future that would be fine...Professor Schnieder at the Macquarie University said, there is nothing we can do practically or scientifically that will make a difference...all we can do is kerb the use of polluting practices; what has been done is done! During the next 30 years of polluting by China and India will be quantifiable and measurable if our emissions remain static...nothing is going to change or reduce climate changes for next 50-70 years...the developed countries have agreed that the developing economies cannot be expected to reduce their emissions until they have had the opportunity to develop their economies.....as Australia's contribution to pollution is around 1%, can you tell me the significance of Carbon Tax in this debate?
Geoff Thomas | 5/08/2012 10:26 14
Kermit, 2/08, it is interesting that you accuse someone of being the victim of a propaganda machine, - in my case, I became aware through fairly difficult to access articles back in the 19 70s, of the research and potential problems for our planet from Global Warming, - there was no money, no praise for folk looking at that, I was regarded by most as a ratbag up to say 7 years ago, but all that time ago I decided to change my life and develop Renewable Energy ideas products etc, although I had no money and not much knowledge. Well, I have been learning, and so has the Science of the Human race, - for me, and I would suggest all us early pioneers, no money, much struggle, much ridicule, but gradually others are waking up to the actual facts and figures and their implications. I constantly follow new research, look at the skeptics arguments, follow them up, (mostly just nonsense) plus I have my own commonsense, that quickly sees such trickery as pretending that Volcanoes throw out huge quantities of Carbon dioxide, - where do they get it? it is not part of lava, the volcano would have to come up in a coal mine and even then the area of the cone itself is quite small, perhaps in the very rare situation that a volcano did come up through a coal seam, for perhaps an hour it would be putting out 1% of what the human race is putting out in that hour only, why do you bring such lies to us? - I have corrected you before on the volcano carbon dioxide nonsense, so you know you are wrong yet keep saying it. In that light your other dubious and un-supported assertions are wrong also and your motives highly suspect. It seems more likely that you are part of a propaganda machine to try and trick folk and probably your Tax rave is also, or why aren’t you attacking the GST, a much heavier burden on all. Is it just that you are paid by the big polluters?
Geoff Thomas | 5/08/2012 10:47 15
to Kermit 04/08 I have not heard of professor Schneider but it was wicked of him to say such a thing, lots of things are being done and a great deal more can easily be done, happy to have a discussion about Terra Preta, (biochar) as it actually reduces the carbon dioxide already in the atmosphere, although it is a bit off-topic. An error in your statement is the implication that static emissions will not worsen climate change, but as the carbon dioxide being emitted (mainly from developed countries) is so much more than what the Earth can deal with it is a situation getting much worse over time. Possibly Prof Schneider is unawares of the steps which can be taken in which case he could have refrained from comment. What Carbon taxes have done eg by the RGGI is to achieve a target of reduction, -actually the RGGI http://www.skepticalscience.com/carbon-pricing-alarmists-disproven-by-rggi.html is 23% ahead of it's overall reduction in 2009-2011 power plant CO2 emissions as compared to the 2006-2008 average, already achieving more than twice the emissions reduction goal, six years ahead of schedule.
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