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The Forum > Article Comments > Climate change's ugly sister > Comments

Climate change's ugly sister : Comments

By Graham Young, published 14/3/2011

When banning CO2 was just a good idea it was popular, but not now that it comes with a cost.

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It is 2011 and we are still being fooled by vested interests telling us that carbon dioxide is a pollutant; that we must get rid of it.
All the big companies recognise that there is money to be made from supporting the concept. They will pay 'x' dollars for the licence and then charge their customers for that cost - plus interest. They cannot lose. Their shareholders will not be losers.
Who will the losers be?
The ordinary family that has no savings, litle superannuation and a very basic wage.
PM Gillard is going to compensate those families? Every cent collected will be paid to low income families?
How will she collect the licences fees? Who will calculate those fees? Who decides who qualifies for assistance?
An administration fee of thirty percent is quite normal.
Will the rest of Australia cover the extra admin costs or will they reduce the gross fees collected?
Prof S. Fred Singer got it right when he wrote that this is a plan to get the poor of rich nations to pay cash to the rich of poor nations.
After the Little Ice Age, the temperature will rise as the planet resumes an equilibrium. In the 20th Century it rose less than one percent (1%)
Barnaby Joyce for Prime Minister. He might get his words back to front but he is very understandable and believable.
Posted by phoenix94, Monday, 14 March 2011 9:04:44 AM
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Graham- Rather than conflate your worthy opinion polls with wild guesswork about Labor's present woes, why not steal a march on the other pollsters and pundits by carefully tracking how opinions change with time after a major event? The glimpse of this in your comment on the resources tax could be expanded.

An interesting issue would be nuclear power. It took several decades for anxiety to subside after Three Mile Island and Chernobyl. The past 5 years or so has seen a major campaign of the nuclear boosters, which has put nuclear in a more favorable light. It will be interesting to see how those opinions change following the recent nuclear incidents in Japan.

But maybe the public won't get concerned about nuclear power. The ABC and your benefactor, The Australian, was very quick to enlist that renowned "expert nuclear scientist" Ziggy Switkowski to placate its readers- I must say a highly risky strategy for both The Oz and Dr Z. With a bit of ingenuity, The Oz might find a way of blaming the nuclear reactor problems on dithering, left-leaning bureaucrats.
Posted by Jedimaster, Monday, 14 March 2011 9:14:22 AM
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Coles and Woolworth gives everyone who wants it a discount on each litre of petrol purchased. Similarly to the discount we could give everyone who purchases petrol a credit equal to the value of the carbon tax. If these credits were now invested in renewable non polluting ways to create energy we would soon build up our renewable energy production.

This is similar to compulsory superannuation. It is not administratively expensive to achieve and should cost no more than 2% of the money collected.

All forms of renewable energy are profitable at current prices if financed this way. That is the credits over time will return more value than the amount invested.

So this approach

Puts a price on carbon
Gives purchasers of energy a long term asset that more than returns the extra money spent
Supports the coalition's view that we should be taking direct action
Reduces our dependence on imported oil

It is even easier to do with electricity as we only pay electricity bills quarterly.

This could be introduced almost immediately and it satisfies the stated aims of all the political parties.
Posted by Fickle Pickle, Monday, 14 March 2011 9:25:12 AM
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We forget the real aims of a carbon tax to encourage everyone not to need to pay it.

Australians do not look at what overseas countries are doing about reducing emissions they take them seriously.

They do not think about their own behaviour.
The best way to start reducing emissions and wasting unrenewable resources would be to stop taking one-person trips in large cars.

That would bring home to us what we are doing ourselves, instead of keeping the debate always leaving our own actions out of it.

We can live better lives without emitting so much greenhouse gas and wasting unrenewable resources.

85% of the cars going down our street have one occupant. Hundreds daily.
80% of the households in our street have two or more cars one of these cars could be a small Australian-made car, for those single trips.

Doing something ourselves would help us to see the whole political scene a bit differently.
Posted by ozideas, Monday, 14 March 2011 9:44:54 AM
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Graham - good article. I see your article has attracted a more than usually mixed group of posters.

In fact, I had suggested to a publisher the idea of a book on the carbon tax, 'The great carbon carbon tax con'.. He tentatively agreed to test the market (although he wasn't very enthusiastic), but I dropped the idea. There is too much risk that Gillard will simply dump the proposal if it becomes an electoral liability, which is looking very much the case. That might happen even before I could write the book.

My thought is the only reason it has been proposed is to shut the greens up for a time - but then again, I never thought Gillard would be mad eneough to propose it in the first place.

Such a tax would be straight madness. No one else has anything like it. There are limited trading schemes in Europe, New Zealand and parts of America - and other schemes here and there - but nothing like a comprehensive, national carbon tax.

Further, no international action in the form of stringent, enforcable agreements is possible. It just isn't going to happen. A carbon tax would put Australia out there, alone with a costly, pointless ideological gesture.
Posted by Curmudgeon, Monday, 14 March 2011 10:16:07 AM
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" In 2013 the carbon tax will be a fait accompli ... At 30% primary vote in the latest Newspoll Labor is probably at its nadir. It will probably improve, but under Gillard, probably not be enough to win next time."

Regarding the prospects of carbon tax adoption, given the following considerations:

that there is no scientific evidence that anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions have caused any measurable global warming;

that there is no scientific or economic justification for imposing a carbon tax;

that any new green industry jobs would be far outweighed by employment reductions in other industries;

that there would be substantial economy-wide costs but no benefits;

that the cost of living will be raised substantially;

that the electorate is realising that it has been conned about man-caused global warming;

that there are no other countries lining up to adopt a carbon tax;

it will be interesting to see how the Government is going to argue, and claw back support, for a carbon tax.
Posted by Raycom, Monday, 14 March 2011 10:16:16 AM
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