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Overwhelming business support for carbon price

Most businesses surveyed supported a price on carbon.

19 August 2013 — Contrary to Opposition insistence that business wants nothing more than to repeal the carbon tax, a new AECOM report shows overwhelming business support for a price on carbon.

The report, commissioned by Businesses for a Clean Economy, found that 88 per cent of the 180 businesses surveyed wanted a price on carbon to address climate change, with 65 per cent favouring an emissions trading scheme, and 29 per cent favouring a fixed price.

Only seven per cent supported or strongly supported the Coalition’s Direct Action plan.

Businesses for a Clean Economy spokesperson Andrew Petersen said most respondents wanted a long-term price signal to facilitate investment and support the transition to a low-carbon economy.

“While businesses across all sectors are getting on with the job of transitioning to a clean economy, substantial investment is being delayed due to the uncertainty around retention of the carbon price,” he said.

Of mainstream businesses, 45 per cent reported that uncertainty around the future of the carbon price had changed investment decisions, while 48 per cent reported that carbon uncertainty was having a negative impact on business.

For those actively involved in the clean economy, 78 per cent said that the uncertainty around carbon pricing was having a negative effect on business, with 60 per cent saying it had delayed expansion into new markets, products, services or investment.

It has been reported that under a Coalition government, $4.1 billion in private investment would be funnelled away from clean energy projects.

“Unfortunately it’s the emerging clean economy businesses that have experienced the most substantial negative impacts from carbon price uncertainty, affecting their ability to access funds, invest in projects, employ staff and expand their businesses,” Mr Petersen said.

“Looking forward, businesses across all sectors are looking for certainty around climate policy frameworks, preferable a market based mechanism, to facilitate the smooth transition to a cleaner economy.”

Of the 180 respondents, 81 per cent were from mainstream business and 19 per cent from the clean economy sector.

See the full report.

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