did you know?

We all talk about Carbon Tax…

Those of us who use fossil fuels to power and heat our homes know to the “cent” the amount of the increase on May 1st. and what it means to our budget.

But do we know for example, why the bag of coal increased by €1.05 per 40 kg. bag?             If your supplier has added more, it’s not Carbon Tax!carbon footprint

Or indeed why wood fuel is exempt for Carbon Tax?

My colleague Richard Hadfield has answered these questions in plain English and I’d like to share this here with you.

1 May 2014 – A date in the diary for Carbon Tax

If you burn wood fuel, this will warm your heart!

On 1 May 2014, carbon tax on solid fuel will increase from €10/tonCO₂ to €20/tonCO₂.   The tax was first imposed on solid fuel on 1 May 2013 which increased prices by €1.05 per 40kg bag.  It now goes up to €2.11 per 40kg bag on 1st.  May 2014 so that Carbon Tax will be about 15% of the cost of a bag of coal.

Carbon tax also applies to peat briquettes which will increase to € 36.67 per ton of product so that a bale (12.5 kg) will attract carbon tax of €0.46 (11% of the cost).

The tax is paid by the first seller within the country so, unlike VAT, it will not be added by the guys at the fuel depot.  It is calculated using the carbon content of the fuel times a conversion factor of 3.664 times the carbon price per ton.

Revenue have been very fair by standardising the carbon content of coal at 72% so, if you buy very good quality coal such as Welsh or South African anthracite with over 92% carbon content, you’re actually “cheating” Revenue.

However, to grin broadly, you need to be burning wood fuel which has NO carbon tax.

The carbon in your firewood is not fossil as it is part of an active carbon cycle of about 30 years whereby carbon is absorbed from the atmosphere by the tree and released when one burns it.   Wood fuel users can rely on a stable price for fuel.

Wood is about 50% carbon so you can tell yourself that you’re saving €36.64 per ton!

FirewoodPellets sample

Richard is the Managing Director of Progressive Certification, a certification body listing among its services:

  • greenhouse gas verification in partnership with DNV.
  • carbon footprinting services to ISO 14064-1.
  • certification of fuel products: Coal to SWiFT 7:2010 and Wood Fuel to NWA 4:2009.
  • fully accredited QMS, EMS and OHSAS certification.
  • energy management certification services to ISO 50001.



About Pat Murphy

True to me; Mother, Wife, Friend, Environmentalist; Living comfortably; Being warm; Knowing what's enough; Chair of WFQA (Irish wood fuel quality assurance scheme)
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