Carbon tax will cost abattoir $3m
OWNERS of the Dinmore Meatworks have called on the Federal government to help them reduce their carbon emissions in order to avoid a carbon tax bill of more than $3 million a year.
Dinmore Meatworks, the biggest abattoir in Australia and the biggest private employer in Ipswich, will have to pay an additional $3.3 million a year after the carbon tax comes into effect.
JBS Australia, owner of the site, said more than half of that cost will be directly due to their emissions with a further $1.5 million due to increased utility prices.
However, the meatworks has developed a plan that would see them reduce their carbon emissions.
However, the proposed plans would cost between six and nine million dollars.
JBS Australia director John Berry, said while the plans would see the abattoir drastically reduce emissions, it required Federal government assistance.
"This is a series of projects, there is no one silver bullet," he said.
The projects would include the covering of the meatwork's anaerobic lagoons and reusing methane emissions for power generation.
"With Federal assistance we can provide an excellent demonstration on how to reduce emissions."
Federal member for Blair Shayne Neumann said he was committed to helping JBS and ensuring the Dinmore facility survived into the future.
"I'm absolutely committed to making sure the company is profitable," he said.
"We want to make sure they're not looking disadvantaged.
"Dinmore Meatworks is very important to Ipswich."
Mr Berry said he held positive discussions with the Federal government regarding the issue.
"I've had positive discussions with Shayne Nuemann our local Labor member, and also Minister Ludwig, the agricultural minister," he said.
"But Dinmore needs to receive a significant amount of direct government assistance to mitigate the cost of the carbon tax.
Mr Berry said in its current state, the carbon tax will create a dual tiered system for meat processing facilities.
He said smaller abattoirs will avoid the carbon tax, while Dinmore would be forced to pay an additional cost of up to six dollars extra a head of cattle processed.
"Unless the government is prepared to put significant dollars to these projects, they need to make sure meatworks in Australia are operating on an even playing field.
Mr Berry said the Dinmore site is being punished for its size.
"Dinmore is twice as large as the next biggest meat processing facility in Australia. The JBS flagship employs 1900 people and is being disadvantaged due to its size," he said.