30 August 2012
Carbon Tax

By now, everyone would have heard of the carbon tax – and possibly be quite bored with the topic!   

But, do you really understand how it affects you and/or your business? Even though it isn't a direct tax on you, there are indirect impacts that flow on to the rest of the economy due to the rise in energy prices.

So, what can you do to minimise the impact?

The first thing you can do is review your business's list of expenses over the past few years and identify what costs are affected. This includes items directly impacted such as fuel, oil and electricity, but also may include indirect items like business travel, freight and waste removal. From this, you can get an idea of the extent the carbon tax will impact your business.

To gain a deeper understanding of where costs may increase, for more significant items, you could liaise with your suppliers on how the carbon tax affects them. There is also an opportunity to increase your bargaining power by negotiating contracts with key suppliers now as a way to reduce the risk of excessive price hikes in the future.

Next, by exploring ways to reduce your business's consumption of the expenses expected to be impacted by the tax, you may be able to highlight potential cost savings. Some quick tips for saving energy and therefore costs are:

  • Don't leave electrical equipment switched on for long periods when not in use. This includes items like computers, photocopiers
  • Use low energy light bulbs
  • Install movement detectors to control lighting in areas not used frequently such as meeting rooms and toilets
  • Involve your staff – get their input on possible ways to make the business more energy efficient

These may appear like "motherhood" points, but with business electricity costs projected to increase by around 20% this year, actions to reduce the impact could result in material savings.

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This Newsletter, of necessity, has dealt with matters of a technical nature in general terms only. Clients should contact us for detailed information on any of the items in the Newsletter. No responsibility for loss occasioned to any person acting or refraining from acting in reliance upon any material in this Newsletter can be accepted by any member or employee of the firm.

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