Clean energy future for Australia

Message from Prime Minister Julia Gillard  

After 20 years of debate, the Gillard Government’s Clean Energy Future legislation has been passed by our Parliament and will become law.

The Government has fought hard to do the right thing. We have acted to protect our environment for our children and our grandchildren.

The Australian Government’s decision to introduce a carbon price has received a lot of attention ”“ unfortunately a lot of what has been said about the carbon price has been wrong.

I want to assure you the carbon price is not a tax on individuals or families. Instead 500 of the biggest polluting companies will pay for the carbon pollution they pump into our atmosphere.

These polluters will now have an incentive to cut their carbon pollution. If they reduce their pollution they will pay less of the carbon price.

In addition, our plan will help Australian companies become cleaner by funding innovative ideas and new clean energy technologies.

The Government understands some people are concerned polluters may pass on the carbon price to their customers. That is why we have a household assistance package in our plan to financially support families.

The Government will use at least half of the money raised from the carbon price to support Australian households. Nine out of ten households will receive tax cuts and increases in their pensions and allowances to assist them with any costs passed on by polluters.

The Treasury Department has calculated that food prices, for example, will go up by less than $1.00 a week on average following the introduction of a price on carbon. This increase will be offset by the household assistance package and most households will receive enough assistance on average to fully cover what will be a modest rise in cost of living. In fact, more than 4 million households will actually be better off on average.

As Prime Minister I want to ensure all Australians are presented with the facts. My Government is committed to delivering on our access and equity principles and ensuring that government information is communicated to all Australians. That is why we are providing materials explaining what the price on carbon will mean for your community.


The Indian Australian community has contributed immeasurably to the Australian community. As a Government we recognise the vital and robust contribution the Australian Indian community continues to make to the success, prosperity and cultural richness of our nation.   Australia has been enriched by the contribution of the generations of Indian families who have enhanced our national character and contributed immensely to our social fabric through hard work, fortitude, and drive.

With this plan, the Gillard Government has acted to help Australia meet the economic and environmental challenges of competing in a low-pollution world.

Carbon pricing is a necessary reform to keep our economy competitive and ensure it continues to prosper. It also the right thing to do for our children to ensure they have a strong future.

To find out more about the Government’s Clean Energy Future plan, including what assistance you might receive, visit

The carbon price ”“ your questions answered


When does the carbon price start?

  • 1 July 2012


Do I have to pay the carbon price?    

  • No. Around 500 of the country’s largest polluting businesses will be covered by the carbon pricing mechanism.   It’s not a tax on households.


How much is it?

  • The carbon price will start at $23 per tonne of carbon pollution.


Where will the money raised go?

  • More than half of the money raised from the carbon price will be used to assist households.
  • The rest will be invested in supporting jobs and in clean energy and climate change programs.


How will it affect households?

  • Treasury estimates that the carbon price will increase the consumer price index by just 0.7 per cent. That means the average household’s food bill will go up less than a dollar a week.
  • To help with these modest price impacts, most households will be given tax cuts and/or increases in government payments.


Will I get assistance? How much?

  • Nine out of every 10 households will receive tax cuts, increased payments or both.
  • For example: a typical family with two children with an income of $85,000 is expected to face price increases of $570 per year but will receive assistance of around $948 per year.
  • To find out what you are eligible for you should go to the Clean Energy Future website or call 1800 057 590. There’s an estimator that can help you work out how much you should expect to receive in tax cuts and assistance at


When do I receive the assistance?

  • Increases in pensions and benefits will start with a lump sum payment in May-June 2012 followed by an ongoing increase in fortnightly payments – from March 2013 for pensioners.
  • Tax cuts will start from July 2012.


Is the assistance just a once off?

  • No. The assistance is permanent and will increase over time.   The Government will review the adequacy of the assistance package each year.


Will it affect petrol prices for my family?

  • No. There will be no carbon price on petrol or diesel for passenger cars and other light on-road vehicles.


What about small businesses?

  • Small business will not pay a carbon price.
  • Small business will not face any extra red tape. They will not need to monitor carbon pollution or fill in any forms.
    • The government will provide $240 million to help small businesses save energy and get advice to help to grow their business sustainably.
    • The Government will also offer a more generous tax benefit to small businesses by increasing the small business instant asset write-off threshold to $6,500. This will increase cash flow for small business and help with the cost of investing in new equipment.


Will it hurt our economy?

  • No. Treasury’s economic modelling shows the Australian economy continues to grow, jobs continue to grow and average incomes continue to grow under a carbon price. In fact there’ll be an additional 1.6 million jobs in our economy by 2020.


Will it reduce pollution?

  • The carbon price will see Australia’s annual carbon pollution reduced by at least 159 million tonnes in 2020 ”“ that is equivalent to taking around 45 million cars of the road.


Short URL: