I am in favor of the carbon tax. I agree with the premise of making companies pay for the pollution they cause so we can use the money to invest in the environment, and compensate people who get hit with price rises as a result of the tax. I think it is right to use a punishing system to drive industry into investing in renewable energy sources. Using incentives does not work because there is no punishment for continuing to use cheaper and dirtier sources of power. There is not enough incentive to change. Tony Abbott says using incentives will work, but it’s not currently working so I can’t see why it would magically start working now. Sure, some companies might take advantage of it, but not enough would (do).
One of the criticisms is that China and India are way bigger polluters than us and their projected pollution emissions are going to increase by 500% and 350% respectively, therefore what we do doesn’t matter. I totally disagree with this line of reasoning. This says that because others are doing the wrong thing, we shouldn’t bother doing the right thing. That is an awful way of thinking and acting in my opinion.
Someone asked me on Twitter today how this tax would decrease the earth’s temperature. As far as I understand, that isn’t actually the aim. The aim is to stop it increasing even more, not to drive it backwards. In an idea world, sure, but that’s not realistic at this stage. The idea is not to make it worse.
I think the negative hyperbole surrounding Abbott’s anti-carbon tax campaign is appalling. If you disagree then fine, offer another solution (which he has done in part), but stop banging on about how crap the government are and just get on with your job of providing an alternative.