There are some good ideas here. The thing is, we need to get serious about this
problem and not keep bowing to the established special interests who want to
preserve the status quo. Had we taken our current approach in the past, we
would be living in clouds of coal emissions (see Dickens) and our food would
more often be adulterated (see Sinclair Lewis). Let's move forward, folks.
Another way to hinder progression. thing is were will the money come from when
people don't use things because of higher taxes? The air is perfectly clean
right now just another way to control lives.
To "Ben J. Mates" I think that you are a little bit late on asking for
a tax on fossil fuels that are burned.The majority of fossil fuels
that are burned comes in the form of gasoline and diesel fuels. Those already
are taxed based on consumption by both the Federal and State Governments.If you want to clean up the air from the power plants, lets get a bunch
of new nuclear power plants up and running. They can be the most resource
friendly power source out there.
@higv: Look up "externality" in any basic economic text. Free
markets only allocate resources efficiently when the cost of a product to a
consumer captures all of the costs of its production and use. Externaliized
costs create market failure because price sends incomplete signals to the
consumer. As the letter writer correctly pointed out, fossil fuels are
underpriced because the cost to the consumer (paid at the pump, say) does not
reflect the true cost of the product. In effect, consumers are being
subsidized. There are many ways to internalize external costs so that market
price more accurately reflects actual cost. Taxes on emissions, programs such
as Cap and Trade, and commodity markets dealing in pollution credits are some.
Some are better than others. Polluting producers can internalize costs by
installing pollution controls. But unless all players in an industry do the
same thing, the conscientious producers will be at a competitive disadvantage
because they will have higher prices compared to their less conscientious
competitors who do not act to internalize their costs. As Garrett Harden
observed in "The Tragedy of the Commons," conscience is
Why is China spending twice as much on green tech as we are?How does
Brazil have en economy based mostly on renewable resources?We have a
lot of catching up to do....
@ higv, the air is perfectly clean in a rural Idaho town of 200. That may be
so. But maybe you need to get out a little. And maybe you should take note of
how things were in the past before there were efforts to clean up the
environment. Years ago I was in an industrial town in France and the air
pollution from a local factory was so bad that a brief visit would leave black
particulates in ones eyes and nostrils. I remember the Cuyahoga River catching
on fire. We can go on and on, so I say, if the government can cause industry to
not pollute and take us to better sources of energy, I'm all for it.
We already pay taxes on fossil fuels. Its called federal and state gasoline and
diesel taxes and depending on which state you live in they are between %.75/ gal
and about $.30/gal. Would you have us pay double taxes? Of course you would!
Fossel fuels are a finite resource that will run out, and are a fuel that when
we buy it goes to countries and parts of the world that support terrorism.Given that, we ought to waste less and use them more efficiently.Double the taxes on oil, but at the end of the year, give this money
back to the American people, in the form of a check for every one that lives
@higvThis plan calls for giving 100% of the money collected back to
the taxpayers in the form of a subsidy. So the only people who would pay more in
the end for energy are energy hogs. Those who use very little energy might
actually be getting money from this plan.
Thanks to Bob Bennett and the one that filled his seat, Mike Lee, along with
their "puppet master", the Koch Brother's, our current combustion of
fuels brings with it the cumulative costs of treating respiratory and other
diseases, waging war to secure energy resources all around the Middle East,
smog, acid rain, and species extinction not to mention the astronomical costs of
climate disasters. Ani't capitalism grand?. That's why it's really
going to heat up in Washington DN come 2012, as these Tea Party and GOP plus
RINO's slide their feet cross the floor, as they head for the door, all voted
out like Bob Bennett.Merry Christmas.Happy New Year.
What is worse fossil fuel spells or the smell of Manure from farms. Pocatello
has a place that causes things not to smell good in town too. There are a few
bad smells . Good thing people make things cleaner. And I am glad there is
fossil fuels to drive our cars around. Somone knows something about some of the
small towns on here as well.
First I think we have to be honest about the premise of the letter; its
"global warming" not "global climate change." Because there
was the need to re-phrase the original lie because the climate gets warmer and
then gets cooler, and has done this for time immemorial. So it became necessary
to play both sides of the fence to cover all the bases for the marxist
redistribution program of the progressives. Whew! Its so twisted.
@KMThe change from using the term global warming to global climate change
doesn't mean it's not warming or that global warming is a lie. It's just that
there's so much more to climate than the thermometer. There's sea ice extent,
and flood/drought frequency, and a host of other things. It's not just "oh
so it'll be a degree warmer?". That's why they switched to climate change;
because it's a term that covers all the other aspects as well.
@The Real Maverick | 9:10 a.mChina is spending 20 times as much on
new fossil fuel facilities as they are on green tech.Most of
Brazil's renewable energy (34% of total energy) comes from hydropower. How many
new dams do you want to put on the Colorado, Yampa, and Green rivers?
Tax them higher and watch your food costs skyrocket. Modern farming relies on
fossil fuels from preparation to harvest to delivery to market. Adding more
taxes is shooting yourselves in the foot.
atl134I'll have to take your word that you are seriously sincere. Now,
who started the Chicago Climate Exchange, and why?
I meant the Chicago Carbon Exchange. Esquire - Did you really say
"bowing" when talking about fossil fuels? We do have the
'bower-in-chief', you know?
@KM"who started the Chicago Carbon Exchange, and why? "Don't know, I've never heard of it. I'm much more interested in the science
anyway. The politics of energy/environmental policy is a different issue.
@KMThe solution proposed is not cap and trade (a la Chicago Climate
Exchange), but a much simpler and more transparent fee-and-dividend proposal
which would not increase the size of government. Rather, it would return all
revenues to households in equal measure. Those who use less carbon would pay
less upfront, and would receive their share of the fees on carbon in return.
There would be an incentive for businesses to be more energy efficient and
development and implementation of cleaner technologies would be stimulated.
Renewables are already very close to being competitive, and with a slight push
they could be the preferred choice of energy sources.
Like higv, Dektol, RedShirt and Mountanman and the rest of the world, I do not
want to pay any unnecessary taxes. We already pay taxes for the
pollution-related healthcare costs of those who can't afford insurance, an
immense military budget, FEMA and the regulation of pollution. All of these
taxes would be defrayed or even eliminated with a tax on carbon. I stand by my
statement that a carbon fee and dividend makes sense in terms of both economy
and quality of life.
Government artificially setting the price of any commodity, in this case via
taxation, is a bad idea, whatever the motives behind it.In the case
of fossil fuels, the poor would be hurt the most because the prices of
everything would rise and transportation would become a rich man's privilege.The free market is already working toward alternatives to fossil fuels
and reducing their use. I say let it work -- that is the only sustainable way.
@LockeUnder the fee and dividend proposal, the poor would receive
reimbursement for anything they spent on carbon, unless they were using more
carbon than the average person. If they use less than average, they would come
out ahead. If we truly had a free market, there would be no
subsidies or bail-outs. The oil deletion allowance and other favors granted the
fossil fuel industry would have never happened. And if externalized costs were
reflected in prices, we would have switched from fossil fuels to renewables some
I'm looking forward to seeing gangs riding mopeds A Gas hits $15 a gallon in the
next 20 years.There's no doubt that market forces will force most
people to drive smaller and smaller vehicles, it's just that it will be too late
for most of the damage to the atmosphere and oceans. Pity. All I ask
is that naysayers don't deny thier opposition later. Get "global warming is
a hoax" tatooed somewhere so your grandchildren know who to slap. Put it on
your tombstone.Yep, my solar panels are great, I'm using God's
fusion reactor and he is very generous. There's something holy about watching my
meter spin backwards during the day.Hybrid cut my gas consumption to
a quarter of what I used to use and I'm looking forward to my first electric car
soon. Nissan Leaf is a cool car.
To "Benjaman | 12:31 p.m." unfortunately the science behind Climate
Change is not settled. If we start taxing or limiting CO2 emissions when Water
Vapor is the real culprit, would you call that a good thing? Better yet, what
if there are solar cycles that are the driver for climate change, how can man
control that?The problem isn't trying to do something good for the
environment, the problem is that we don't have a model that even gives us a
rough idea of the global changes that could be coming.
To RedShirt When 97% of climate scientists agree that humans are causing climate
change, I tend to agree with them. However, you are entitled to form your own
opinions. But even if you don't believe in human-caused climate change, there
are lots of other good reasons to shift from burning fossil fuels to renewables,
some of which I've included in my letter and my comments. Wouldn't it be nice to
have clean air to breathe in our cities? Wouldn't it be nice if children with
asthma or others with respiratory diseases didn't have to breathe things that
aggravate their symptoms? Wouldn't it be nice if we didn't fight wars over
energy resources? Wouldn't it be nice to be free of global petroleum politics
and institute local solutions to our energy needs?
To "Benjaman | 11:39 a.m." when 100% of scientists can't produce a
model that accurately models the climate and can't meet the 95% Confidence
Interval that all other scientists have to meet, I tend to not trust what they
claim.You have Forbes reporting "New NASA Data Blow Gaping Hole
In Global Warming Alarmism"From the WSJ "The Climategate
Whitewash Continues". That article starts out with the alarmists saying
"Don't believe the 'independent' reviews.." You can read
"Climate Science In Denial" also in the WSJ where they clearly state
that "Global warming alarmists have been discredited, but you wouldn't know
it from the rhetoric this Earth Day.."You can go to the source
of the climate models, and their emails. They have great quotes such as the
following:the science is being manipulated to put a political spin
on itmight not be too clever in the long run.Basic problem is that
all models are wrong not got enough middle and low level clouds.So,
the question is do you believe the private emails of the researchers or do you
Benjaman - I will respectfully disagree with you on one aspect. 97 percent of
scientist don't agree that human activity is causing climate change - they do
agree that human activity is "contributing" to climate change. It is
a subtle but very important difference. What is in debate is at what level.To Redshirt - the very same WSJ also just reported that pollution has
been linked to a between 7 and 9 point decrease in measurable IQ. We can go
all day long cherry picking those quotes that support our own personal agendas.
I really find it hard to believe any rational person living in Utah
or Salt Lake counties in the winter can't see man's contribution to the problem.
Who cares about what we call the problem, it is clear there is a problem. Utah
valley in the winter makes LA's 70's air look pristine. No we can
follow the train of thought that the "Red" warning days are really
just a marxist ploy to redistribute wealth, but to many others out there this is
an addressable problem that can be fixed without complete and total political
and economic revolution...... just sayin'