Monday, December 17, 2007

Article on the Importance of Market Forces and Innovation

A friend of mine recently sent me an article that outlines some good economic principles when looking at the challenge of fighting climate change, including explaining why large companies are do not have an incentive to invest in major energy R & D.

This is why I really like BC's intent to monitor the governments emissions and buy "virtual offsets" which go into a research fund for clean energy. Its a bit misleading as they are not buying actual offsets and so won't be offsetting their emissions, but may in the long run be creating a more important outcome: clean technology.

I'd like to see a national carbon tax replacing the lowest bracket of the income tax. However, this tax must NOT go into general revenue. It should be used for education and research, preferably run like a large venture capital fund. This also creates a challenge, as we do not want the government to crowd out people doing good work in the Venture Capital field. It would have to be structured to only fund the technology that is too risky or too early for Venture Capital funds to be involved with.

This is good for the environment and good for the economy. Mr. Baird, Mr. Prentice, Mr. Flaherty, could you please get together and propose this to Mr. Harper? Or can you not find time in your busy schedules to deal with the most important issue of our life times?

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