Carbon Tax

Shikha Dalmia on Failed Green Strategies to Fight Climate Change

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Climate.Change.Summit
Kris Krug / Foter / Creative Commons

When Australia embraced a carbon tax two years ago, global warming warriors were ecstatic. Australia had gone from being environmental laggard, refusing to even the sign the Kyoto treaty at first (just like the benighted US of A), to environmental leader. They told the world to watch and learn.

But two weeks ago, Australia's newly-elected Prime Minister Tony Abbott scrapped the tax that was as popular in the Land Down Under as Donald Sterling is here.

So if anyone needs to learn from the death of Australia's carbon tax, and the terminal fate of Europe's cap-and-trade program, notes Shikha Dalmia, it is the enviros themselves. And the lesson is that "mitigation" strategies—curbing greenhouse gases by putting economies on an energy diet—are not winning or workable.

Instead, envros should accept that the sins of emission can't be legislated away and abandon their quixotic quest for radical cuts in emissions in favor of less economically destructive coping strategies.