AUSTRALIA’S peak body for refrigeration has charged that the industry is facing price increases of up to 500 per cent due to the carbon tax, which came into effect on Sunday.
Steve Anderson, executive director of Refrigerants Australia, said Australians would have to pay for what he called “government mismanagement of the issue” as it relates to fridges and air conditioning.
“The impact of these price increases on small supermarkets, property managers and small contractors will be severe,” he said.
He explained that R22, an ozone-depleting and relatively inefficient refrigerant, was replaced by R410a, which is a highly efficient refrigerant that does not destroy the ozone layer.
“Yet under the new tax, R410a will face a very significant tax penalty — its price will more than triple,” he said.
“This is likely to have little impact on the use of this refrigerant, especially as there is currently no energy-efficient alternative available at this time. Nevertheless, the costs will have to be borne by the industry, for negligible environmental benefit.”
Tim Knight, of Knight’s Refrigeration and Air Conditioning in Percy St, said he’s only just heard of the price rise and, like many of his south-west colleagues, feels slightly left in the dark.
Read more in Friday’s edition of the Portland Observer.