Monday, December 04, 2006

Canada's Liberals reject Pigou carbon tax

Attention Republicans and Democrats: Pigovian carbon taxes may be political suicide. Not much of a surprise in that idea, but it took concrete form in Canada over the weekend when the Liberal Party (the Democrats of the North) picked a new leader, Stephane Dion. Mr. Dion is an inducted member of the NoPigou Club, having campaigned against carbon taxes throughout his leadership bid.
Going down to defeat is former Harvard prof and international intellectual Michael Ignatieff, an avid Pigovian. Ignatief even mentioned carbon taxes in his speech to delegates at the convention: "We must put a price 0n pollution and on carbon emissions."
Not great politics. Bad economics, too. Did Ignatieff spend time with his Harvard colleague Greg Mankiw? Ignatieff's leadership bid had other problems, but I would put his Pigovianism on the list of stumbling blocks. When it came down to the final votes, Ignatief would have carried no support from Alberta, Canada's oil province. Dion, meanwhile, would have attracted Alberta suport, even though he's a tough-talking promoter of the Kyoto Protocol.
Terence Corcoran


Anonymous Mike Moffatt said...

Yes. That's exactly why Ignatieff lost. Because he took the wrong side in the Corcoran-Moffatt dispute on carbon taxes. There can't possibly be any other factors.

If you're so certain about your position, then why haven't you confirmed that you'll attend that debate we were both invited to?

2:31 PM  
Blogger Tuco said...

I'll try to work through your blog to see if you've addressed this before, but what is your position on Canada (and the U.S.) at least raising taxes on gasoline up to British and European levels?

5:24 AM  
Blogger Tuco said...

In response to your September "Global Cooling Effect" article, where you write:
The science behind the idea of man-made global warming, always theoretical and often speculative, appears set to receive another blow. A report in New Scientist magazine yesterday chronicles the work of a crew of scientists who forecast a new wave of global cooling brought on by a decline in activity in the sun.

Why give such support and sympathy for this view, when the science is so heavily weighted towards the fact that humans are ruining our climate?
Have you seen the U.N. Millenium Ecosystem report?

More than 1350 scientists from 95 countries contributed to the ten reports, which also underwent an exhaustive peer review process through a broad partnership of U.N. agencies, international scientific organizations, and development agencies, with guidance from private and public sectors.

Their findings?
Ecosystems have been changed more rapidly and extensively by humans in the last 50 years than in any other period to meet rapidly growing demands for food, fresh water, timber, fiber, and fuel.
Ecosystem changes have provided substantial benefits for humans (e.g., more land is farmed), but these gains have resulted in the degradation and unsustainable use of ecosystems (60 percent are being degraded or used unsustainably, including fisheries, water supply, waste treatment, water purification).
Ecosystem degradation will worsen significantly over the next 50 years, undermining if not reversing efforts to end poverty.

4:54 AM  
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11:07 PM  

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