Australia has one of the largest per capital emissions of carbon dioxide in the world. In an effort to reduce emissions a past government enacted a highly controversial carbon tax. Its opposition claimed that the carbon tax would wreck the Australian economy. Of course that claim was nonsense; a single tax does not wreck economies but the overall effect of taxation on economies can make them prosper or decline.
The tax in Australia was about £13 for every tonne of greenhouse gas produced payable a several hundred of the top polluters; all of those top polluters have plenty of money and thriving businesses.
The present government made it a point of honour, and a point of dogma that it would repeal the carbon tax. The Australian Senate has now voted to repeal the carbon tax and replace it with a measure that gave taxpayers’ money to industries to help them reduce pollution and emissions.
So instead of the polluter paying the taxpayer pays. It is an odd reform, and one that is bad news for lovers of the environment and good news for the top polluters who will now get free government money. The stick has been abandoned for the carrot, and some who love carrots will now gorge on them at the expense of the taxpayer.