Taxing FlatulenceMonday, May 21, 2001
Yesterdays news article suggesting that the government is seriously considering an animal flatulence
tax to conform to the wishes of the green lobby and the Kyoto protocol is verging on the bizarre
going on the stupid
An annual carbon tax estimated at $35,000 for the average sheep and beef farmer and $15,000 for the
average dairy farmer to the layman farmer is a tax proposal that’s application seems incomprehensible.
While the objective of a tax may be the reduction of total carbon emissions for the whole economy by
eliminating the marginal portions of the pastoral industry, that end may not be achieved that simply.
It seems to be the ambition of this government to have all land currently grazed by sheep planted in
trees. Perhaps in anticipation of a surge in demand by paying tree huggers for a place to visit to
while away their non industrialised time.
The suggested annual carbon tax of $35,000 will halve the current profit of the average sheep and beef
farmer. Can this be the intention of the governments plan? If the tax was applied as currently
indicated how can the government be certain that the land would pass into the hands of foresters rather
than other more efficient pastoral farmers.
If total carbon emissions are not reduced and addition carbon sinks created then surely the proposed
tax is nothing more than cerebral bull sh*t.
Perhaps President Bush has a clearer understanding of the effects of the Kyoto Protocol than he has
been given credit for. He may, by his action in abandoning the US ratification be rightly pointing
out the need for a substantial rethink of this very fraught issue.
Beware of “greens bearing taxes”