OUR council has been named on a list of big polluters.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council is listed on the Clean Energy Regulator’s public information database of organisations likely to be liable under the carbon pricing mechanism.
It was one of 24 councils added to the database on Friday. Other councils listed include Tamworth Regional Council, Toowoomba Regional Council and Newcastle City Council.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council development and environmental services director Matt Rogers said the focus for Port Macquarie-Hastings Council had been on working with other Mid-North Coast Group of Councils members to understand the impact of the carbon tax.
“More recently we have engaged with the Clean Energy Regulator on our carbon tax liability as it relates to landfill activities,” he said.
“We expect that many more councils will be responding to the Clean Energy Regulator and will also be listed as entities with a carbon tax liability associated with landfill.”
The Clean Energy Regulator is the federal government body responsible for administering legislation which will reduce carbon emissions and increase the use of clean energy.
The body is required to publish a list of entities which are likely to be liable under the carbon pricing mechanism.
The first phase of the database was released in May with 248 organisations.
The second phase includes additional councils which the Clean Energy Regulator has reasonable grounds to believe will be liable for the 2012 to 2013 financial year.
Clean Energy Regulator chairwoman Chloe Munro said the body wrote to about 100 councils it believed operated a landfill facility to help them determine whether they may be liable under the carbon pricing mechanism.
“After consulting those local councils, we have today [Friday] published an additional 24 local councils that we are satisfied are likely to be liable,” she said.
Another 22 organisations contacted as part of phase one have been added to the database.
That brings the total number of organisations listed to 294.
Port Macquarie MP Leslie Williams said it is clear the carbon tax was going to hit the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council budget, just like it would hit household budgets.
“The Australian Local Government Association estimates that the cost of the carbon tax (excluding landfill operations) will be a minimum of $185 million nationwide,” she said.
“In addition, councils like Port Macquarie-Hastings Council will pay carbon tax on the landfill operations they run or use.”
Mrs Williams said as tip charges go up and up, the risk of illegal dumping would also go up and up.