Carbon tax and solid fuel

Dec 6, 2012 | Energy and Carbon, Environment | 0 comments

The various heating oils and natural gas have been subject to the carbon tax since May 2010.  The Irish government has just announced that the carbon tax is now being extended to solid fuels and this is good news.

My own view is that burning coal and turf in an open fire is a highly inefficient way of heating a home.  These open fires also tend to have smoking chimneys that pollute their neighbours.  Any move to discourage this inefficient and dirty habit should therefore be welcomed.  Indeed, if any home heating fuel should have been excempt, it should have been natural gas as it is the least polluting.

Many people will be up in arms about the taxing of solid fuel and point out that the poor will be hardest hit.  This may be so, but then I would argue that the real culprit is the open fire.  Perhaps the solution is for the fuel allowance to be only paid to those with efficient heating systems and that a grant be available to install such systems.