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Irish households, especially those in rural areas, warned to stock up on heating fuels ahead of carbon tax hike

DUBLIN: The Irish households have been warned to stock up on heating fuels ahead of the carbon tax hike, which will take effect early next month. Earlier, the government had announced that the prices of gas, home-heating oil, coal and briquettes would go up from May 1 due to tax hikes. The government’s announcement comes at a time when thousands of consumers struggling on the PUP due to the pandemic.

Another notable fact is that the high carbon tax comes at a time when most energy producers are raising domestic gas prices. Studies have found that carbon tax affects low-income and rural people the most.

In this year’s budget, the carbon tax was raised from €26 per tonne to €33.50. The high carbon tax on petrol and diesel had already been implemented. But the increase in heating fuels was only delayed until May.

As a result of the carbon tax increase in May, a home-heating oil fill would cost €19 more. Carbon tax will be €84 for filling a 900-litre tank.

According to the calculations made by price comparison site Bonkers, the increased carbon tax would add €18 to the annual cost of gas, bringing the overall carbon tax to €79 over a year.

Daragh Cassidy of price comparison site Bonkers.ie said: “With all that’s going on right now due to COVID and with hundreds of thousands of people struggling on the PUP, this Government tax increase couldn’t have come at a worse time.” Daragh Cassidy also noted that several suppliers have raised gas prices by up to 6.5% in recent weeks.

He added that there is still some debate on whether carbon taxes are successful in reducing CO2 emissions by households.

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