Solar-powered Energy

Energy Debt: Soaring Power Bills Pushing Families into Crisis

Approximately 145,000 small businesses and homes in NSW are in a crisis due to the rising cost of power and owe power firms about $663 in unsettled power bills. The latest statistics indicate that 10% of the debtors owe at least $1500.

The situation is alarming and this has led to the state-run Energy and Water Ombudsman requesting family and friends of elderly consumers to get in touch with the service providers to negotiate a cheaper deal.

NSW Energy Debt

Data from the ombudsman’s office indicates that demands and requests from the affiliated consumers have increased by about 21% over the winter and autumn season. This period sees consumers turning up the heat to deal with the cold season.

Energy Debt

Increasing Debt

According to Ombudsman Janine Young, financially-vulnerable consumers always flood her office seeking redress to the energy debt. They complain about increasing debt, high bills and disconnections.

When speaking to the Daily Telegraph yesterday, she said that customers particularly the low-income earners, casual workers, and working poor are struggling to keep up with the rising power bills.

Losing a job means that you no longer can afford to pay the bills and this may as well lead to the inability to provide a decent warm meal to your kids.

Ms Young told the newspaper that the complaints have risen following the 20% increase in price announced in June this year. She encouraged family and friends to chip in and assist the elderly in footing the bills or renegotiating with the providers for a better deal.

Data from the Australian Energy Regulator

Data from the Australian Energy Regulator shows that 85,801 NSW households owe the service providers for unsettled electricity bills, whereas 44,854 households are yet to pay their gas bills.

The report further indicates that 11,245 small businesses have an electricity debt and 3175 have pending gas bills.

Craig Memery, a Public Interest Advocacy Centre spokesman cautioned that “ordinary Australians’’ are facing challenges in settling their power bills. The crisis isn’t just a financial problem to the battlers but and the average person, but also to the environment.

Solar-powered Energy

More people in Middle Australia are already struggling to make their mortgage payments, and the financial stress is becoming worse due to the energy debt.

The Ombudsman’s office lodged 23,613 complaints between 2016 and 2017, and this comprised of 6546 cases in April- June. This was a 20% increase compared to the same period last year.

Most customers complained about Origin Energy, a company whose underlying profit in 2016-2017 was $550 million. The firm had 4867 complaints filed against it, 3818 complaints targeted Energy Australia while 3607 grievances were directed at AGL.

The Solution

Energy saving efforts such as the use of solar power energy been strongly encouraged.

Many Australians are looking towards renewable energy solutions and eco-friendly devices such as low energy washing machines, fridges, and solar-powered water heaters to reduce costs.

How Solar Power can Reduce Your Environmental Impact

What comes to your mind when you see the sun?  Warmth, light, and life are words that commonly thought of, but electricity and energy are not. These perceptions, however, are slowly starting to shift.

The sun was worshiped in ancient times, and it is well known that without it life on our Earth would not exist. The radiance emitted by the sun benefits all animals and plants on the planets, and has helped life evolve into what we see before us today. With new solar technologies allowing us to more effectively make use of sunlight we now benefit from the warming rays of the sun more than ever before.


A map showing the area required, if filled with solar panels with today’s technology, necessary to power the respective regions of the world.

We are all familiar with the term “solar energy”. Obviously, this denotes energy captured from sunlight. Now that we can efficiently and effectively utilize the suns energy to create power, there should be no need for traditional, dirty power plants and the masses of toxic pollution and radiation they emit. Solar panel technology has come a long way in recent years and it is now well known that a small array of panels could essentially power the entire world. Alas, the oil and mining corporate giants will not let it be so.

While large scale implementation of this sort of technology is unlikely as our global governance is controlled and owned by corporations, that doesn’t mean we can’t act on a local level to make a difference. Solar panel technology allows us to obtain electricity much cheaper than via traditional methods, and in a much more environmentally friendly way. It is cost-effective because the sun does not ask anything in return when we use its sunlight. It is readily available, when the sun is up, and solar energy can be stored in batteries for later use.

We all know that our planet suffers from a lot of environmental destruction and degradation. Energy coming from fossil fuels is one of the worst offenders when it comes to air, water and nuclear pollution. While we don’t support a carbon tax, it doesn’t mean we don’t care about the environment. Issues caused by excessive and unnecessary contamination of our environment are causing health issues, biodiversity imbalances and acidification of the ocean. While we can’t rely on our government to ween us off the fossil fuel bottle, we can take responsibility for ourselves and reduce our dependance on the system.

Let’s delve a little deeper into solar energy. It can be utilized through numerous means, with new technologies being created all the time. Most industrial buildings and residential homes with existing panels uses photo-voltaic solar cell panels. The mechanism utilized for these solar panel absorbs the sunlight and with the use of some semiconductors, converts it into usable energy. Another form of technology is used by bigger industrial plants where a number of mirrors or lens focus on a certain point where that magnanimous heat is converted into energy. This is an example of a concentrated solar energy.

Rooftop solar panelsSolar energy has a lot of benefits to mankind and our environment. Though at first there can be a large initial expense to purchase and install the solar panel set; it will pay off in the long run. Not having to pay an electricity bill each quarter is an awesome feeling.  Using solar energy also helps you a feel good, knowing you are doing your bit to help our suffering Mother Earth.

Solar cell usage also saves a lot of water, which is used in huge amounts at traditional power stations. By relying less on the electricity grid, you also reduce the load meaning less maintenance will be required using less oils and other toxic chemicals which also reduces pollution. While we realize these differences are only miniscule, if enough people do it it will make a big difference. A solar panel installation on your home can cost as little as $1500 and the long term financial, environmental and societal benefits are immeasurable.

We all need to do our part to help save the planet. While we can bicker and bitch about our two-party governance and their obvious bias towards big business with no regard for the environment, doing that isn’t helping things. Do your part by removing your dependance on them and help spread the word so that others can follow suit. If we all do our part, we won’t need to worry about carbon lies or unnecessary taxes.

Think globally, act locally. A motto for a better future.

The Carbon Tax is Gone! (For Now)

Wonderful news from the senate today, with the passing of the government’s repeal bill at 39 votes to 32. After several weeks of negotiation, Tony Abbott has successfully fulfilled his election promise and had the carbon tax scrapped. Government senators applauded as the bill was passed, and Tony was quick to celebrate his long anticipated achievement, releasing a public statement titled “The Carbon Tax is gone!”.

“We are honouring our commitments to you by building a strong and prosperous economy for a safe and secure Australia.” Tony said after the passing of the bill. “This is great news for Australian families and for our nation’s small businesses… Today the tax that you voted to get rid of is finally gone.”

The lead-up to the removal of the tax, an election promise that many believe is the reason the Abbott government was voted into power was an arduous, frustrating and sometimes embarrassing ordeal for the self-titled “conservationist government”. Abbott remains hopeful that his Direct Action legislation where he plans to pay polluters to reduce their emissions will still succeed, despite a hostile reception from the Greens, Labor and crossbenchers.

Despite today’s win, Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Environmental Minister Greg Hunt refused to rule out a possible return to a price on carbon in the future.

3 Ways You Can Help the Environment that will be More Beneficial to Australia than a Carbon Tax

Over the last decade there has been a lot of debate about carbon’s effect on our environment, and coincidentally the whole Carbon Tax issue. Many awakened citizens don’t even believe that carbon is actually bad for the planet, and this whole debacle has been brought about by a shadow government intent on taxing us into servility and slavery (if we’re not there yet already). Corporations who are set to profit from the Carbon Tax Agenda (such as those owned by the infamous Al Gore) and the Controlled Media have been ramming environmental rhetoric down the throats of Australian’s since the early 2000s. Unfortunately a large proportion of the population here are too busy working 60-80 hours a week in a struggle to try and pay off their lifelong indebtedness mortgage, or too tied up watching the Hollywood’s latest brain-draining series to educate themselves on what is actually going on in the real world.

Carbon Dioxide in the Atmosphere Chart

One Twitter User’s Take on the Ridiculousness of Carbon being the main cause of Climate Change.

With so much negativity surrounds the current state of Australian politics, and the overwhelming distrust of Tony Abbott and his one-step forward, two-steps back policies; the team here at No Carbon Tax have been discussing things we can all do to promote positive change. While the Carbon Tax issue will hopefully soon be over, we have plenty more to keep fighting for as our beautiful Great Barrier Reef is about the be destroyed so that Australia can exports gas that we poisoned and destroyed our very over prime farmland to extract from the ground. Let’s not go into that issue right now though. In an attempt to keep things on a positive wavelength here is a list of small changes you can make in and around your home to help maintain a beautiful Australia.

1. Change Your CFL Bulbs to LEDs.

Compact Fluorescent Lights have been marketed as a great way to save money on electricity around the home, but many people are not aware of the many negatives of CFLs. Promoted as using less energy and having longer lasting bulbs that traditional incandescent bulbs many people have been quick to make the switch to the newer technology lights.

Did you know there is an incandescent bulb in California that has been running for over 100 years? The Centennial Light was made with a thicker filament so that it would not blow so easily. Light bulb companies knew that if bulbs never blew it would reduce their profit margins so filaments were made thin and fragile so that light bulbs needed to be continually replaced.

Despite knowledge of this, quality incandescent bulbs have not been manufactured for almost a century, and CFLs have become the mainstay of lighting in suburban homes. This is a problem for us because CFLs contain mercury, so when they are discarded they contaminate the earth with this neurotoxic poison, and also because they produce Dirty Electricity which conflicts with our own electrical fields and interrupts the bodies ability to heal itself. One way to avoid these issues and save money on your power usage is by utilizing new LED light technology.

LEDs do not contain mercury nor do they produce dirty electricity. They are far more efficient than incandescent bulbs and because of their far superior running times (compared to the common weak incandescent bulbs) they will save you money in the long-term. New LED lighting technology means that no longer will whole bulbs need to be replaced when lights wear out, as single diodes can cheaply and easily be switched. This is great for the environment and for your wallet! Leaders in the development of this technology, are Australian LED Downlight specialists LED Arts.  Their team of engineers and electricians have been assembling LED lights from some of the big players in the lighting technology arena, like LG and Sharp, and they have been working to develop new way to improve LED lighting design and functionality.

I won’t get too technical with the details, but essentially if you have one of the next generation LED lights you’ll never need to purchase a new globe ever again. If I diode stops working you can just buy another and replace it yourself. This new technology if adapted by the masses will dramatically benefit the health of Australians and their environment. Do us all a favour and consider making the switch to LED downlights in your home or office today.

2. Install a Water Tank in your Home

This one is an obvious tip for those of you who still haven’t realized the benefits associated with collecting your own rainwater at home. Rainwater tanks can be installed easily, and can be picked up extremely cheaply, second-hand on eBay for those of you who have to allocate the majority of your monthly wage towards car registration, student loan payments, and home loan fees. There are numerous benefits from collecting your own free water from the sky, so until the Government decide to start taxing rainwater too (Don’t put it past them, they’ve already been thinking about it!), it makes sense to install your own tank.

When you have your own supply of freshly collected rainwater, you can filter it and use it for fluoride-free drinking water, or use it on your garden unfiltered. Either way you’ll save money on those ever rising water rates. Another benefit of having your own water supply is that you are not completely reliant on the system in the case of another drought, and you are helping the rest of your local area by contributing to the supply of water rather than being just another user. We spoke with a local Plumber in Brisbane about how simple it was to install a water tank.

“Once you’ve determined the best place to position the tank, all you need to do it put down a slab of concrete, drop on the tank and connect up all the downpipes,” he said. “We get the occasional job fitting water tanks in people’s houses, and more and more these days at commercial premises, but really anybody can do it. You can even get a local handyman to help you do the work if you don’t feel confident enough to take the job on. Plumbers will usually be happy to lend a hand with the pipework, but the cost for a qualified plumber can often be much more than the cost of a handyman or the cost of a carton of beer to give to your mates to help you out.”

So there you have it, a reasonably cheap and simple way to make a positive change to your local environment and also save yourself some money. If you haven’t already got a water tank installed in your home, what are you waiting for?

3. Reduce the Amount of Plastic Waste You Create

This one is fairly obvious, but many people do not even think about the amount of plastic waste they create each day. Once you start thinking about how much non biodegradable rubbish you are the cause of each and every day, it is very easy to start reducing it. Plastic bags and other plastic products are choking our oceans, and plaguing our landfills. They release toxic chemicals such as Bisphenol-A (BPA) and Dioxins into our waterways and soils and choke and poison our wildlife.

There are so many ways you can reduce the amount of plastic waste you produce, all you need to do it think about it. Here are some examples:

  • Reuse a water bottle (preferably a stainless-steel or BPA-free plastic one) instead of constantly buying water bottles.
  • Take boxes or reusable bags to the grocery store to bring home your shopping in.
  • Refuse plastic bags at the grocery store when only purchasing single items.
  • Use a glass or BPA-free to carry your lunch in, instead of using glad wrap or sandwich bags.
  • Recycle any plastics you can’t reuse
  • Refrain from buying products with excessive plastic packaging i.e. apples wrapped in plastic at the grocery store or toys with several layers of plastic wrapping around them.

Many businesses are attempting to reduce the amount of plastic wrapping used on their products by offering items in glass or wooden containers or even in paper bags. The owners of one business we spoke with who sell Educational Toys online said she had noticed a growing trend of people purchasing products that were made of more wood than plastic. “We can’t be sure if it’s because of environmental or health concerns, but my guess is both.” She said. “When searching for new educational toys we always look to stock products that cause less harm to the environment. While it’s not possible to only stock toys and games made of biodegradable material, we do our best to ensure our kids and the children of our customers get exposed to as few nasty chemicals as possible. Especially with young toddlers who often like to put things into their mouths.” You can view all the products sold by Tumble & Roll Educational Toys here.

Moving away from excessive plastic usage is a growing trend and one we would like to see continue. If you were faced with the horror of seeing what it’s like for the animals living near the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a huge expanse of plastic and other waste products floating in the ocean, you would start to reconsider the choices you make on a daily basis.  Next time you go to make a purchase of any kind, please consider what your choices are doing to the environment and don’t give the Government any more reason to try and impose another ridiculous tax on us all.


Promised to Repeal the Carbon Tax, Still the Most Unpopular Prime Minister Ever.

His promise to repeal the Carbon Tax played a big part in getting him into power, yet Tony Abbott has succeeded in completely destroying his credibility and popularity within a very short time-frame. Thousands of angry and upset Australians turned out to protest last Sunday in cities and towns across the nation. “March in March” was a huge success in bringing about awareness to those Australian’s who are not so aware about the atrocities performed on an almost daily basis by those who have been given (or have just taken) too much power from their own people. Not surprisingly there was very little coverage given to the events by the mainstream media, however awareness was spread through the communication medium of social media: Facebook, Twitter etc. A few stories were posted on news websites and I heard a 20 second update about it on radio CB FM, but television news coverage was almost non-existant.

Those that attended had plenty to protest about; from human rights (asylum seeker) injustices, to gay rights issues; from the secret signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership to the destruction of the Great Barrier Reef and the Forests of Tasmania, to cutbacks in education spending and massive increases in military spending. Does a single person in Australia even support the murder and genocide of innocent human beings going on in Afghanistan and the Middle East? Some ignorant people even protested the upcoming potential removal the Carbon Tax. The way Tony Abbott has been leading Australia Corporation thus far however, it wouldn’t surprise me if he back-flips on that election promise as well. It’s not like his approval ratings can go much lower anyway.

Several of the No Carbon Tax team attended the Sydney March to protest the numerous injustices being carried out by the Abbott Government. We’d just like to give a big shout out to Auscomms Communication Sydney from whom we got walkie talkie hire for the day. The two-way radios made it much easier to keep in contact with each other while we were organising crowds and bringing together all the like-minded anti-Government protesters.  Thanks Dave for suggesting getting the radios for the event, they really made things much easier especially when mobile phone network coverage was so unreliable probably due to the large number of people on the networks at the same time.

We encourage you all to keep fighting the good fight, not just to repeal the Carbon Tax but to fight for justice and ethics in Australian Politics, not just nationally but globally as well. Every living being on this planet deserves to be treated with respect. Can any global Government honestly say they they are doing what is best for their people instead of corporate interests? Everybody knows the Australian Government can’t. It doesn’t matter if it’s NLP or Labor the results are never in our favour. Australian’s need to take back control of their country and stop the sell off of national treasures and our values and ethics.


Spotlight on Local Business and A New Wave of Inflation

Recent data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that Australia’s consumer prices index rose by 0.8 per cent in the three months of 2013 – more than twice as fast as expected. The major drivers of this was shown to be big increases in the price of fruit and vegetables and the cost of domestic and international travel. The news of increasing inflation is not good for families and business owners who were hoping for a further interest rate cut, with the news causing a shift at the RBA from debating the merits of another cut towards a more neutral stance on rates. Inflationary pressures on necessary items like food and fuel, will likely lead to an increase in prices across the board.

Screen Shot 2014-02-02 at 2.41.35 PM

Economist for Commsec, Savanth Sebastian agrees. “If petrol prices were to lift over coming months this would feed through the economy in higher transportation costs and in turn price increases across an array of goods and services,” he said. Before this data release the probability of a further interest rate cut before the middle of the year was above 50 per cent, however this potential cut is now looking much less likely. Back in 2011, the Australian Government estimated that Australian families would be paying and extra $9.90 per week, or around $520 per year towards the Carbon Tax during the first year after its introduction. Like all Government Tax increase “estimates” this figure should however be taken with a grain of salt, and many families and local business owners believe that the tax has had a far larger impact on their weekly and yearly budgets. Labor’s own figures state that the carbon tax will increase by a factor of 6 between mid-2014 and mid-2019 – reaching $38 a tonne by 2019 and increasing to $350 a tonne over time. You can rest assured that the majority of this tax will be passed on to the end consumer, putting further pressures on the debt-ridden and already struggling, average Australian family.

While still only in its early days, this additional expense is already putting unwarranted financial pressures on local businesses as well. A plethora of small business owners have been in contact with us to discuss the effect it has had on their businesses thus far, and to show their support for the anti-tax movement. The No Carbon Tax team interviewed a few of them to hear about how exactly they have been affected and what they are doing to try and reduce the financial burden. A spokesperson for Pesky Possum Pest Control who wished to remain anonymous, said that the Brisbane-based business who specialize in possum removal had really felt the impact over the last few years of increasing prices. “Because our contractors drive to different houses and businesses all across Brisbane, the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast to perform their pest control and possum rescue and removal work each day, a small increase in the price of petrol makes a massive difference to us at the end of the week” she said. “It’s not just petrol that has been affecting our pest removal teams either. We’ve noticed a jump in prices from bait for our possum and turkey traps, to sprays and equipment for our pest control, to tires for our trucks!”

Jay from Ads on Google another local Brisbane business owner said many of the clients of the search engine marketing agency where he works are feeling the pinch. “It’s seems like a lot of small businesses have had to cut back on their expenses recently due to their ever-increasing input costs. Generally when people cut back on expenditure, advertising and marketing is one of the first things to get culled.” He said. “One area where we’ve really notices a bit impact is clients who import high-end, quality fabrics and clothing from overseas for the local market. Two online clothing stores that I know of, The Freedom State, who specialize in bohemain-inspired ladies fashion and Fly Peacock who’s focus is on men’s designer t shirts, singlets and shorts have both had to reduce the frequency of their overseas flights in search of new designs and suppliers due to the increasing associated costs. The clothing industry isn’t an isolated case, anyone who travels overseas fairly regularly will have noticed the fairly large and consistent increases in the costs of tickets over the last few years.”

Tony Abbott claims the Tax will be repealed on July 1st, which will be a huge relief for Australian families and businesses. I’m not going to hold my breath though, the UN’s Agenda 21 and plans for a uniform Global Climate Tax isn’t going to be that easy to stop, and I’ve seen too many politicians break their promises to believe anything any puppet of the Australian 2 party system has to say until it has actually and definitively happened.

Exposing the IPCC’s Fraudulent Climate Science

In a video exposé of the numerous inconsistencies and falsified data contained within the IPCC’s most recent assessment of the state of climate science, James Corbett makes a number of excellent points in his efforts to enlighten the world to the fraud that is being perpetuated upon us. The 2013 assessment which has arrived 5 years after the 2007 report which warned us of dire circumstances and unprecedented anthropogenic climate events, is even more dramatic than the last. The new report states that the IPCC’s scientific consensus is that humans are the dominant cause of climate change with a certainty of 95% (up from 90% in 2007) and Global Warming is “unequivocal” even though the earth had actually been cooling for the majority of the time between report releases.

Most people will inevitably believe that the IPCC reports are based on legitimate science using the correct scientific method, but just how are these uncertainties calculated? Has anybody really looked into how the IPCC processes really work? James dissects the new report to show us a huge level of inconsistencies and bias within the pages of the report, from molding statistics to support the UN’s Global Warming agenda, to blatant lies that we can only expect that they never thought the public would ever pick up on. Take a look at this excellent breakdown of the assessment for yourself to learn more.

In the above 45 minute video James gives a full analysis of all the recent IPCC and supporting hype from the mainstream media, and examines and debunks the organizations processes and conclusions. If 45 minutes is too long for you to watch or you already distrust the IPCC and just want to know the gist of the arguement, take a look at this 2 minute video about how the IPCC came to it’s “scientific” conclusion that we as a species are the main cause of climate change with a 95% certainty.

More great videos like these on other important political and global issues can be found on James’ YouTube channel – The Corbertt Report.

Top climate scientists and experts were in uproar upon the release of the report; trashing many of the the methods, findings and claims it contained. Based on leaked drafts of the controversial assessment, critics had been ridiculing and debunking the IPCC’s climate claims since the several weeks prior to the official release. After the official report release in Stockholm, the deluge of criticism accelerated, with more than a few top scientists calling for the UN’s IPCC to be disbanded entirely.

Climate scientists aren’t the only one who are losing confidence in the IPCC and the UN’s authority on Global Warming/Climate Change. A recent online survey taken by an marketing agency BrisDigital based in Brisbane, showed that the majority of the Australian public have little confidence in the IPCC’s findings and believe that more analysis should have been done before implementing such “fixes” as the Carbon Tax. A spokesperson for the digital marketing agency did however comment on their results stating that their may have been a bias within their data due to only people who are educated on the topic or have an interest in it choosing to take their survey. “There may be a large proportion of the population who remain uneducated and uninformed on the topic of the IPCC and Climate Change in general, and their views may not be fully reflected in our findings” he said.  The full spectrum of results can be viewed on the BrisDigital agency website.

Despite this, and amid a plethora of skepticism and protest the UN and it’s IPCC still maintain their stance on the impending anthropogenic doom the earth is facing. Just how much longer can they keep their heads in the sand?