Sunday, December 20, 2009

We need proactive emissions reduction

Carbon Emissions

Some politicians do not seem to understand. We need real carbon emissions reduction, not some cover-up. All the talk about forestation and land use change is not solving the real problem, our reliance on fossil fuels. Sure we can do with more trees because of the carbon they take out of the atmosphere, but this bio-sequestration is reactive. It encourages the carbon emissions to occur and then deals with them.

We need to be proactive! We need a way to wean ourselves off fossil fuels – a way to make low-carbon solutions economically attractive. We need a well designed framework to reduce carbon emissions - one that achieves strong targets and provides for economic stability and growth.

Every scheme has advantages and disadvantages, be it a tax, a cap & trade, an Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), or a cap & dividend. However there is one little discussed and very powerful advantage of an ETS, it allows individuals and organisations to directly interact and help force deep cuts in carbon emissions. Companies such as provide an interface to buy and cancel carbon credits on an ETS. The cancelled credits are removed from ever being used to emit carbon dioxide! At the same time your efforts help drive investment in low-carbon solutions – the only way to a sustainable future.

Climate change or not we need an ETS to reduce our dependence on oil before it becomes scarce. The additional benefit of investment in low-carbon solutions reduces pollution. It is a win-win scenario.

Contributed by: Michael Salvatico

Image credit: Codo via Flickr Creative Commons.

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