Political Involvement

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Year 10 Commerce Assessment Task: Political Involvement
Carbon Tax
Question 1: Identify and outline the nature of the issue you are researching. Include a description of this issue, why it has arisen and its impact on society. The carbon tax is one of Australia’s biggest current political issues, the scheme itself was developed to help tackle climate change and help Australia environmentally. Carbon is present in all fossil fuels (coal, petroleum, and natural gas) and is released as carbon dioxide (CO2) when it is burnt. The CO2 is a greenhouse gas which traps heat when it is released into the atmosphere. On the 10th of July 2011, Julia Gillard announced a flat charge of $23 per ton of emissions to be levied on the top 500 polluters of the country. Due to government decision to exclude fuel from the scheme, the number is halved from 1000 polluters, the tax came into effect on the 1st of July 2012 and in 2015, the tax will be replaced by a full market-driven system, an emissions trading scheme which will control pollution by providing economic incentives for achieving reductions in the emissions of pollutants. Fuel suppliers and distributors emitting synthetic greenhouse gas, including air-conditioning and refrigeration industries, are exempted from the tax. The idea is to tax the big polluting companies in Australia for all the CO2 they produce, sounds good right? Make the big companies pay when they pollute and obviously they will stop polluting and turn to clean energy sources or at least pollute less right? So why are so many Australian citizens in opposition to this tax? Well firstly the companies getting taxed may not switch to clean and renewable energy sources as it is a costly process, they may instead just make us (the everyday Australian citizen) pay for the tax i.e. if they have to pay more to produce their products due to this carbon tax, they will just raise the price of the product for the consumer so they can maintain their profits. This in turn will mean the prices of living will go up, the price of electricity and gas, even the price of food will rise. The government is aware of these problems and has promised compensation to citizens in the forms of tax cuts, family payment increases, and pension and allowances increases. Overall the scheme has its pros and cons and most of Australian society is split over whether this carbon tax is going to help greatly or be a big waste of money.

Question 2: Compile a media file. You are to:
* Collect 4 newspaper articles and 2 political cartoons relating to the issue. * Each article and the cartoons are to be pasted on A4 paper. * Provide source and date of article/political cartoon.

* Summarise each article and explain how it relates to the issue. * Explain the political cartoons and give reasons as to why you think it is effective or not.

CARBON TAX NEWSPAPER ARTICLES
Carbon Tax Is Here To Stay, Says Combet
Date: June 5, 2012
Lenore Taylor National Affairs Correspondent For The Sydney Morning Herald LABOR would never use its votes to help an Abbott government repeal the carbon tax, meaning the Coalition would probably have to go to a double dissolution election to abolish it and the tax would operate well into a first term, the Climate Change Minister, Greg Combet, vowed yesterday. In an interview with the Herald, Mr Combet said Labor planned to hold Tony Abbott to account for his ''rank'' and ''deceitful'' fear campaign against the tax, as Labor puts in place a survival strategy that banks on a smooth introduction of the tax and the household compensation package to turn around its dire political position. He also conceded it was ''quite feasible'' his new Climate Change Authority would recommend a higher renewable energy target and a tougher overall greenhouse emission reduction target than the minimum 5 per cent cut by 2020 - which could lead to higher carbon prices. Mr Abbott is continuing his anti-tax campaign, but as July 1...
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