Carbon tax gaining public support, poll says

Right-winged politicians continue to employ scaremongering tactics to thwart public support for the carbon tax which took effect on July 1. The public has also feared the new tax would hurt households.

However, the Climate Institute Chief John Connor said the misunderstanding is caused mainly by ineffective communication strategy implemented by the Government. Although advertising and promotional campaigns were put up, “the message hasn’t got through,” the Herald Sun reported.

According to new report by the Institute, the carbon tax gained more public support after the compensation package was explained more clearly.

In a poll conducted this week by Ipsos Social Research, the Institute released a report that shows an improved support for the carbon tax package— almost doubled after the compensation package is explained.

Earlier surveys showed that out of 1131 people, a significant 52 per cent opposed the carbon tax with only 28 per cent supporting it. But when it was explained the money raised goes to low and middle income households, businesses, and towards renewable energy, support jumps to 47 per cent while those opposing it tumbles to 29 per cent.

Other findings include:

  • 67 percent wants the Government to take a lead role in fighting climate change while 11 percent wants the Government out;
  • 61 percent were fearful the new tax would hurt the economy, but 43 percent believes it would dirve investment in renewable energy;
  • 36 per cent believe their households will be much worse off and 29 per cent say they will be a little worse off. One in five say they will be about the same and 10 per cent think they will be better off.
  • Opposition Leader Tony Abbott vowed a “blood pledge” to scrap the law if elected in 2013, but only 44 percent believe Abbott and the Coalition would repeal it.
  • The Government says about four million households will be better off, two million will come out even and three million will be worse off.

    Anti-carbon tax protesters march to show their opposition to the tax in Sydney, July 1 (Photo: AAP)

Meanwhile, Gujji Muthuswamy, adjunct lecturer and faculty of Business and Economics at Monash University said the carbon tax continues to create confusion because it has not been explained in “plain language.”  The Conversation carries Muthuswamy’s mock letter addressed to Prime Minister Julia Gillard explaining to the Australian public what the tax is all about.

Blog Link: Asian Correspondent