Bjørn Lomborg has been struggling to suppress action on Climate Change for some time now. He has reasoned that it is not such a big deal, and we would be better spending our resources and attention on other global ills.
Now, however, he’s proposing a universal Carbon Tax, in order to promote Renewable Energy – both Wind Power and Solar !
What’s gotten into the economist-man ? Has he been poisoned by teeth-whitening chemicals ? Has he finally seen the light ? Or does he think that anything is more workable than Cap-and-Trade ?
“Lomborg calls for a carbon tax : June 17, 2009 : Bjorn Lomborg, a Danish business school professor and author who has riled environmentalists by arguing that addressing climate change should be a lesser priority than global health and nutrition initiatives, is calling for a $7 per ton tax on carbon dioxide emissions, reports the Wall Street Journal. According to the paper, Lomborg says a carbon tax “could address what he calls a ‘market failure’ in the development of solar-power systems and wind turbines effective enough and cheap enough to compete with fossil fuels.” Supporters of a carbon tax say it is a more efficient approach to regulating CO2 emissions than a cap-and-trade system, which they say will be complex and full of loopholes. Supporters of cap-and-trade argue the system offers greater flexibility (including more opportunities for carbon trading) while setting a fixed limit on emissions. They maintain that cap-and-trade is politically more feasible than a carbon tax, which enjoys little support in Washington.”
“JUNE 18, 2009 : Climate Fight Heads for New Round : …Some […] assert that Europe’s experience with cap and trade shows that the system on its own has a negligible impact on pollution. It would make more sense, they say, to spend money on developing clean-energy technology. Others say the focus on cap and trade has diverted attention from the need for better strategies to reduce energy use. Bjorn Lomborg, a Danish business school professor and author, has won over many Republicans, and alienated many Democrats and environmentalists, by arguing that a cap-and-trade system rigorous enough to make a serious dent in fossil-fuel consumption isn’t politically feasible. No matter how high oil prices rise, businesses and consumers will use fuel at roughly the same rate they do now, he says, because they have little alternative. For proof, he says, look at last summer’s sharp run-up in oil prices. Demand for oil fell, but only by a little, he says, during a break from meetings with lawmakers — mostly Republicans — on Capitol Hill. “We are price-inelastic” when it comes to energy. Mr. Lomborg’s numerous critics challenge his grasp of climate science. They also take issue with his view that governments should invest heavily in research on alternative technology instead of spending heavily to slash greenhouse-gas output in the short term. Mr. Lomborg says governments should commit to spending 0.05% of gross domestic product on clean-energy research, financed by a $7 a ton tax on carbon dioxide. That could address what he calls a “market failure” in the development of solar-power systems and wind turbines effective enough and cheap enough to compete with fossil fuels. Buying what he sees as today’s premature renewable-energy technology “would be like putting an inefficient [computer] on everyone’s desk in 1965.” ”
“MAY 22, 2009 : The Climate-Industrial Complex : Some businesses see nothing but profits in the green movement. : By BJORN LOMBORG : Some business leaders are cozying up with politicians and scientists to demand swift, drastic action on global warming. This is a new twist on a very old practice: companies using public policy to line their own pockets. The tight relationship between the groups echoes the relationship among weapons makers, researchers and the U.S. military during the Cold War. President Dwight Eisenhower famously warned about the might of the “military-industrial complex,” cautioning that “the potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” He worried that “there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become the miraculous solution to all current difficulties.” This is certainly true of climate change. We are told that very expensive carbon regulations are the only way to respond to global warming, despite ample evidence that this approach does not pass a basic cost-benefit test. We must ask whether a “climate-industrial complex” is emerging, pressing taxpayers to fork over money to please those who stand to gain. This phenomenon will be on display at the World Business Summit on Climate Change in Copenhagen this weekend. The organizers — the Copenhagen Climate Council — hope to push political leaders into more drastic promises when they negotiate the Kyoto Protocol’s replacement in December. The opening keynote address is to be delivered by Al Gore, who actually represents all three groups: He is a politician, a campaigner and the chair of a green private-equity firm invested in products that a climate-scared world would buy. Naturally, many CEOs are genuinely concerned about global warming. But many of the most vocal stand to profit from carbon regulations. The term used by economists for their behavior is “rent-seeking.” ”