The cost of carbon

CUSTOMERS of freight rail companies in Gladstone will eventually foot the bill for the carbon price.

Local companies in Central Queensland, including QR National, will raise prices to ship commodities across the state. It's expected the industry will foot a $100 million bill per year as a result of the carbon tax, 50-60 million of that sum expected to be paid by rail freight companies.

"We expect the financial impact of the carbon tax on QR National to be minimal as the majority of the direct impact can be passed through to our customers," a QR National spokesperson said.

"While we acknowledge the carbon tax is a key consideration for the resource industry, we do not foresee any significant impact on continuing growth in haulage volumes for metallurgical and thermal coal."

Queensland Rail said customers would not face any increase in fares following the introduction of the carbon tax.

Australasian Railway

Association chief executive Bryan Nye said the carbon tax would increase emissions in the long term.

"Ironically, the carbon tax, which is designed to reduce pollution levels, provides a financial incentive to switch to trucks, which will put more trucks on our roads and increase transport-related emissions," Mr Nye said.

How will it affect the rail industry?

  • 294 of Australia's biggest polluters will be slugged $23 for every tonne of carbon they produce.
  • The ARA predicts rail companies across Australia to pay $100 million per year.
  • The road freight industry is exempt from the tax.
  • The ARA claims freight companies will opt for cheaper transport measures via road, instead of rail.
  • Rail companies lose customers through tax.

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