On 30 April 2014, the ACCC instituted proceedings against refrigerant gas wholesaler Actrol Parts Pty Ltd (Actrol), alleging it made false or misleading representations and engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct in contravention of the ACL in relation to the introduction of the carbon tax scheme. 

The ACCC alleges that Actrol represented to customers that price rises were due to changes in input costs and general market conditions, and implied that those changes were as a result of an increase in its costs of supplying certain types of hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) refrigerant gas in light of the introduction of the carbon tax scheme.  The ACCC alleges that Actrol was amassing a large amount of HFC gas prior to the introduction of the carbon tax scheme, and the price increases were implemented by Actrol in order to increase its profit margins and achieve a significant one off benefit in its earnings.

The ACCC’s carbon monitoring role continues, with the ACCC noting in its carbon monitoring report for the March quarter that it is considering issues relating to the application of the carbon tax repeal legislation, including what constitutes price exploitation in the context of the carbon tax repeal.