MOST Ipswich households will be assisted financially to offset the costs of the carbon tax and will not be worse off.
That was the message delivered by Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Mark Dreyfus yesterday when he met business leaders and councillors in Ipswich to brief them on the impact of the carbon tax.
Mr Dreyfus, who was the first Labor heavyweight to appear in Ipswich before today's Community Cabinet meeting at Redbank Plains, said a large majority of households would get on average an extra $10.10 a week from the Federal Government to offset expected costs associated with the carbon tax. Mr Dreyfus outlined how certain industries would be eligible for grants from a $9 billion pool as part of the government's jobs and competitiveness program, to help them increase energy efficiency and stay viable.
"There has been a massive amount of misinformation around the country during the last 12 months, but now the carbon price is here people are starting to see that the price increases are going to be modest," Mr Dreyfus told the QT.
"The great majority of households in Ipswich will be helped in the form of direct household assistance, tax cuts or increases in their pensions and will not be worse off as a result of the modest price increases we are expecting."
Mr Dreyfus also outlined "direct assistance to energy-intensive projects for industries such as steel, aluminium, cement and glass. We are providing assistance for energy efficiency improvements in food and foundry industries and energy efficiency information to a range of small businesses."
Brad Zanow, manager of Zanow's Sand and Gravel, said he was "not sure" what impact the carbon tax would have on his business after meeting with Mr Dreyfus.
"We don't know until we look into the rules and regulations to see if we will get any of that funding. Hopefully we will," he said.
"But it was good that we were able to have the discussion."
The council can also apply for funds from a $200 million grant scheme provided for energy efficiency projects. Mr Dreyfus also said Opposition leader Tony Abbott's direct action plan would cost households an extra $1300 a year, but with no compensation.
"He will be using people's taxes to pay polluters," he said.