Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme falls short

Elected on a campaign promise of tackling climate change, Kevin Rudd's Labor government in Australia has released a preliminary greenpaper outlining the structure of a Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (an emissions trading scheme) for Australia.

Curiously, the greenpaper was released only days after the Garnaut draft on climate change, and it fails to meet several of Garnaut's key recommendations.

The significant problems are:
  • emission permits will be given away to the most polluting industries
  • cash payments will be given to coal fired power stations
  • fuel excise will be lowered to compensate for fuel price increases due to a carbon price
In addition, there are no commitments to reduce emission other than to meet the 60% reduction by 2050. No cap for emissions has yet been set, and no interim reduction targets are specified.

Unfortunately, this structure of the CPRS greatly compromises any real effect on reducing emissions.

The Federal opposition led by Brendan Nelson has an even worse policy position. They are arguing about delaying the start date for emissions trading (the CPRS) by pushing it out to 2011 or 2012. In a nutshell, they are just playing politics, and still have several "climate change denialists" within their ranks.

We need to write letters to all our elected politicians telling them it is just not good enough - we need emergency action to decarbonise our economy, not political games and weak ineffective schemes and policies that favour big polluters and don't reduce emissions.

1 comment:

RVB said...

Giving money to polluters to clean up their act is like giving money to casinos to stop problem gambling!