Think tank wants fossil fuel levy to pay for climate disasters

fossil fuel
fossil fuel

The Australia Institute has given special benefits on coal and other fossil fuel companies which can help to pay the rising cost for natural disasters, which climate scientists have warned will become more frequent and severe owning to global warming.

The money will be collected from the proposed $1 levy per tons of carbon pollution on fossil fuel production in Australia and would be invested in a National Climate Disaster Fund that is independently managed by a Commonwealth-legislated agency.

The tax measure would raise more than $1.5 billion a year in addition to public funding for post-disaster recovery efforts. A Deloitte study calculates the annual economic toll from natural disasters will rise from $13 billion now to $39 billion by 2050.

A levy on fossil fuel production is an appropriate contribution from the companies making the single largest contribution of any activity in Australia to global warming.

While Australia’s fossil fuel resources are owned by Australians, they are extracted and exported mostly by large global coal and oil and gas companies.

These companies make virtually no effect to paying the costs of cumulative climate-related tragedies that are a direct importance of the increasing concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

The proposed levy could also help manage the problem of increasing insurance premiums in the areas which are most likely to natural disasters. For residents in these areas, such as cyclone-prone north Queensland, premiums are already at unaffordable levels.

The industry works alongside the community, governments and other stakeholders to help and ensure that the insurance remains reasonable and available through reworking and increased community flexibility.