Archive for the ‘Kyoto’ Category

They Killed My Dog

October 17th, 2007

While Joanne is wondering where Stephane Dion is:

What will Stephane Dion’s next move be?

First of all we need to find him.

The answer seems obvious to me: he’s mourning for his dog. Poor Kyoto.

One question though. Will there be any smarmy remarks from David McGuinty?

Kyoto, Stephane Dion

Is a Carbon Tax Now On for Federal Liberals?

September 26th, 2007
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Remember the caterwauling when John Baird released his Kyoto report, and Elizabeth May said a carbon tax would not need to be anywhere near the $195 a tonne the report said, and Stephan Dion said no carbon tax was necessary, a $20 tonne deposit system was all that was needed?

Liberal Leader Stephan Dion also rejected the $195 figure as excessive, saying that his party proposes a $20-per-tonne “deposit” instead of a tax.

“It’s a deposit that the companies will have to give to the environmental bank — and they will have this money back if they decrease their emissions,” Dion told Question Period co-host Jane Taber.

“It’s like when you have your bottle of Coca-Cola and you bring it back to the grocery store. You get your money back. It’s not a tax.”

Not a tax. That has been Stephan Dion’s line from the start. No Carbon tax.

If that is true, why did Dion’s Industry Critic and co-chair of the Liberal Party of Canada’s election platform committee, Scott Brison, pen an article today in which he says: “It is clear that… governments eventually will put a price on carbon.”

What is a price on carbon, put their by governments, but a carbon tax? Dress it up however you want, but Scott Brison called a carbon tax a sure thing. And since he’s helping write their platform, we must assume it’s now Liberal policy.

Carbon Tax, Global Warming, Going... Going... Gone Nuts For The Environment, Kyoto

Would You Stop Driving for 12c a Litre?

June 6th, 2007

Elizabeth May thinks you would. I wonder. Hasn’t the price of gas gone up more than 12c a litre this year? What has it stopped you from doing?

And since there’s all the caterwauling about gas-gouging, ask yourself this. In the current pricing scheme, does demand and supply meet? That is, is there excess of either? And if Elizabeth May’s scheme works, and it’s true that the oil companies are gouging, or taking excess profits, then what’s to stop them absorbing the tax increase? According to lefty think tax Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, the oil companies are taking 15c a litre excess profit. If a 12c tax hurts demand, then they could afford to drop prices back until demand returns. Not only could they, it would be good business to do so.

Then what? 25c a litre? 50c? 60c? Gee, I wonder who said that?

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Sixty cents a litre is the starting point for serious reduction. This is just a smooth trick to get carbon taxes in play, they’ll adjust accordingly later. And we all know how hard it is to get governments to adjust down.

Update: As Gerry Nicholls wonders, is this part of the Liberals plan as well. May is, after all, a defacto Liberal candidate.

Updateier: Steve Janke has a post on this. As you can see in the comments, Richard passes on his gas expenses to customers. I pass it on to retailers in the form of non-buying. Janke makes much the same point.

Carbon Tax, Elizabeth May, Going... Going... Gone Nuts For The Environment, Kyoto, pimply minions of bureaucracy

Caifornia Leading the Enviro-Whacko Pack

June 1st, 2007
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Now that Governor Schwarzenegger has left the country, spreading easy-going, shucks it’s going to be easy environmentalism, it’s a good time to see what is meant by environmentalism in California. Seeing as BC just signed the Pacific Coast Collaborative to Protect Our Shared Climate and Oceans, it’s worth pondering what that means, and Ontario just signed an emissions deal, and everybody is following the California light bulb ban idea, what else does California have planned for us?

Throwing a few logs on the fire on a nippy evening, or boosting a home’s market appeal by advertising its wood-burning fireplace, could go the way of the coal chute and the ice box for many Southern Californians if newly proposed air quality regulations are adopted.

As part of air pollution plans designed to meet federal deadlines, South Coast Air Quality Management District officials have proposed a ban on wood-burning fireplaces in all new homes in Los Angeles, Orange and portions of Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

In addition, on winter days when pollution spikes, wood-fueled blazes in all fireplaces would be banned in highly affected areas. That could amount to about 20 days a year, district officials said.

Of course, a California winter and a Canadian winter are two different things, but can this idea be far behind? Yes folks, politicians and activists have your fire-places in their sights. Yet reducing our home energy usage is also in the plan, with natural gas prices expected to double, and dirtier energy more so.

Are you really prepared to turn down the thermostat, without the aid of a fireplace or stove, in the middle of February? Will Canadian politicians really try this one? Why not, they have told us we need to buy light bulbs that cost about 4 times more, that require recycling, and that , frankly, work lousy, yet no one raised a peep. Most people shrugged and said “makes sense to me.” Why wouldn’t they try fireplaces? And if you think because you already have a fireplace, your safe, think again:

Another measure that would require closing off wood fireplaces or installing $3,600 pollution control devices before a home could be sold had been dropped as of late Thursday, an AQMD spokesman said.

Yea – for now.

freedom for the individual is the only truly progressive policy, Going... Going... Gone Nuts For The Environment, Kyoto, pimply minions of bureaucracy, property rights

The Cost of Bill C-288: Report

April 25th, 2007
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The Environment Ministry last week produced a report, The Cost of Bill C-288 to Canadian Families and Business, suggesting that the cost to Canada of Bill C-288 would be a 6.5% GDP decline (the largest post WWII recession), a doubling of Natural Gas prices, $1.60 litre gasoline, pestilence and locusts – lots of locusts. While the last two may not be in the report, both opposition leaders, Stephane Dion and Elizabeth May, have insinuated as much about the report.

The criticisms are based on the figure of a $195/tonne carbon tax the report says is required. Elizabeth May suggests that realistic figures are more like $30 – $50 tonne. I can only guess she is confusing a carbon tax with carbon credits, which most experts agree need to be in the $40-$50 range. If she thinks $50 would do it, consider that it would increase gas at the pump by 12c litre (not including increase in refinery costs). That’s a long weekend jack-up, not a fix to reduce carbon by 33% (even more laughable is Dion’s $20-per-tonne ‘deposit’ for companies – a 5c litre increase. I get that now between going to and leaving work).

In order to test Dion and May’s theory, I put the numbers to a quick test: $195 tonne gives an at the pumps increase of .47c (1 litre of gasoline produces 2.4 KG of CO2. 1KG – .001 tonne. $195x .001 = .195. 195 x 2.4 = $0.468/litre of gasoline increase.), before refining costs. Considering the carbon tax will be on both sides of the equation, pump and refinery, it is not unreasonable to assume a 60c increase in gas. If the gas numbers are accurate, then I can accept the others without evidence to the contrary.

But is that too much, can we make Kyoto reductions next year with a 12c litre increase. The report says we need to make a 33% total reduction in GHGs. It estimates that 25% of those credits can be bought on international markets, leaving every person and industry to make a 25% cut in their emissions. How much would gas have to increase to make you reduce consumtion by 25%? Twelve cents? Four? Or John Bairds Sixty Cents a litre? (In fairness, Elizabeth Mays number should be closer to 20c.) Same rule for home heating. To cut your Natural Gas use 25%, what does the price have to be?

I have analyzed various reports in the past few months, and 60c a litre on gasoline is the number I expect to see from any serious report. Frankly, I think it’s low – I expect a doubling of gas prices from current prices are required. Sixty cents a litre is the low end of the scale. So I have no trouble accepting the environment ministry’s report.

There are however, various problems that crop up with the report, and Kyoto, when you read this. A carbon tax is expected to produce a significant decline in energy exports, as tar sands production loses some of it’s cost advantage. This energy production has to be made up somewhere, so while Canada is suffering a Kyoto induced recession, someone else is producing the carbon we refused to.

Then there is electricity. Coal will be hit more than Natural Gas, which will be more expensive than hydro. However, Alberta and Ontario are more reliant on coal. While long term “… planned new hydro-electric generation capacity in northern Quebec, Manitoba and Newfoundland and Labrador that together with development of an east-west electricity grid, could dramatically reduce the dependence of Canadian industry and consumers on high GHG-emitting energy sources…” sounds good, how does Ontario and Alberta becoming dependant on Quebec and Newfoundland for hydro affect provincial politics. Does Ontario really want to be beholden to confederations blackmailers? (I know Alberta doesn’t.)

Meanwhile, doubling Natural Gas prices implies much more for dirty electricity generation. A person wonders how high prices would have to go to make new nuclear generation a worthwhile investment? Sooner or later an Ontario Premier will have to consider it.

Further economic activity that can be anticipated, according to the study, is a weakening of the dollar and “effects on monetary policy.” I presume that to mean stimulative effects, i.e. lowering of the interest rate, but as a lower dollar and increased carbon prices are not inflationary, I can’t rule out higher interest rates.

And in the end, how effective would all this be? Consider this statement:

Revenue received from a broad carbon tax could be recycled back through the economy through changes in other tax rates, although at the same time it would be essential to ensure that the government’s overall fiscal situation be kept whole in order to avoid returning to deficit.

Translation: they will give some of the extra tax money back through other tax relief (although not all), however expect tax increases as you decrease usage. You benefit what from cramming yourself into a tiny car, and wearing sweaters to bed in February? Nothing, because that savings will be taxed back to protect government revenues. Now isn’t it funny how Stephan Dion and Elizabeth May never got upset about that bit of sophistry?

And who said that would happen? And what was that quote again? Something about farthings and “pimply minions of bureaucracy?”

Carbon Tax, Global Warming, Kyoto, pimply minions of bureaucracy