Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Back Of The Pack (Price Tags)

Regular readers know of my amusement at the ostrich-like politicans who pretend as if Australia is the only country acting on climate change. You can spot them by phrases like "no point acting alone" and "wait for the world", and references to "our major trading partners".

Now the Climate Institute have settled this once and for all. They commissioned a report by Vivid Economics to analyse the economies of the UK, USA, China Japan and South Korea. Mathematically combining taxes, incentives, investment etc, they calculated the implicit price on carbon.

Australia's was $1.70. Japan's was double that, the USA 3 times, China 8 times and the UK 17 times (at $29.30). The result is best summed up by the report's key author Dr Cameron Hepburn:
Clearly Australia has some distance to travel in order to catch up to where the rest of the world is here. There's clearly no risk Australia will be leading the world on this issue. If anything we're running the race at the back of the pack.

He also added that "if you want to reduce your emissions, the cheapest way of doing it is a broad carbon price."

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