Combet rubbishes claims of massive refrigerant gas price increase

Minister for climate change and energy efficiency Greg Combet has rubbished claims that the carbon tax will lead to a massive increase in common refrigerant gas prices.

Shadow minister for innovation, industry and science Sophie Mirabella made claims earlier this month that the price of a commonly used refrigerant gas would go up from $92.88 per kg to $377.71 per kg.

However Mr Combet has stated that the gas Ms Mirabella refers to will only attract a carbon tax price of $75 per kilogram.

Furthermore, the minister asserts that R404A gas makes up less than 10 per cent of the refrigerant gas used in Australia.

"R404A has a global warming potential over 3,000 times more potent than carbon dioxide - that is why its price will rise under a carbon price. Many other refrigerant gases are much less potent," said Mr Combet on June 26.

However executive director of Refrigerants Australia Steve Anderson has maintained that the carbon tax, which is set to impact gas and electricity prices across the country from July, will not have the desired effect and will only hurt Australian businesses.

"The carbon tax is supposed to change behaviour ... but the people using these systems do not have a choice," Mr Anderson told News Limited (June 26).

Mr Anderson claims that many of the businesses which use R404A did not have a say as to what type of gas was used in their cooling systems.

Posted by Callum Fleming