EurActiv - Letters to the Editor

Sir,

Regarding ‘France plans transitional CO2 tax for big emitters‘:

Polluting atoms should stay in the soil. Simultaneously a dead stop would be inhumane.

Therefore the countries of the planet should initiate a uniform international tax proportional to the amount of extracted carbon and uranium atoms (which is easy to calculate and measure.) The extractor pays.

To get the producing countries to agree they probably must be allowed, as compensation, to keep a fixed portion of their tax revenue. Provided extraction is not subsidised.

The United Nations could receive another portion of the revenue, and use it for administration, to fight poverty, for health services, forestry, tree plantations and other environmental care, as well as for developing fair technologies.

The most efficient way to cut down on carbon emission is by reducing extraction.

Deals based on ‘reduced emissions’ will probably function wretchedly. For example leading economists warn that they will lead to damaging protectionism.

Such deals are also too hard to meet, too difficult to monitor and too hard to make fair. And they will require a large number of bureaucrats. Additionally, those who refuse to participate can make big money on lower fuel prices due to lesser demand for fuel.

Monitoring emissions instead of extraction is indeed ‘to put the cart in front of the oxen’. It is an unnatural abomination. As usual we are treating the symptoms instead of the sickness.

I suspect deliberate deception in all this talk of ‘reduced emissions’. Probably it is emanating from a wish to maintain control and to make money on ‘carbon trading’. That way you can do business as usual, yet create the illusion that adequate measures are taken.

Not charging for extraction but making it expensive to emit is as like saying, ‘the beer is free but using the toilet will cost you an arm and a leg!’

We need an upstream solution!

J Torben Staehr

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