Positive tax

September 16, 2007 at 6:55 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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BUSINESS | September 16, 2007
Economic View: One Answer to Global Warming: A New Tax
By N. GREGORY MANKIW
The case for using a carbon tax to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

This makes a lot of sense to me.

Earlier this week, there was an article in the Wall Street Journal:

WSJ.com – Climate Change’s Great Divide

Lawmakers Favor Carbon Caps, Trading; Economists Prefer a Tax

By DEBORAH SOLOMON
September 12, 2007; Page A4

(See Corrections & Amplifications item here.)

The biggest political battle in Washington over climate change may not pit Democrats against Republicans. Instead, it could be economists versus politicians.

Many academics, even conservatives, favor a tax on carbon emissions. Many lawmakers, including some liberals, fear a political backlash against new fees. They lean toward a cap-and-trade system, which would set a limit on carbon-dioxide emissions and require companies to obtain permits to release carbon dioxide into the air.

… This article will be available to non-subscribers of the Online Journal for up to seven days after it is e-mailed.

After reading Lawrence Summers’ remarks in favour of taxes, my simple feelings, as a non-economist, are that we should support any politician bold enough to propose carbon taxes to combat climate change: that takes real courage.

There must be ways to make the taxes benefit poorer members of society by rewarding them for carbon-efficient lifestyles through improvements in public transport instead of road-building, encouraging healthier lifestyles by taxing meat more heavily than fruits and vegetables, not to mention ‘carbon credits’ in the form of bonus points to children who walk or cycle safely to school, even if it means they get there a little later đŸ˜‰

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