Zut alors! Ze Chef Frog, Macron, ‘e iz not ‘appy wiz ze prix of ze Carbon: Europe needed a significant minimum carbon price to boost investment in its energy transition, and a European carbon tax at the bloc’s borders to guarantee fair competition for its companies… Macron said Europe had to give “the right price signal” for carbon emissions, and make them sufficiently high enough to attract investments. He said that a carbon price below 25 to 30 euros ($35.31) per ton was not efficient to spur investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency. If in the years ahead, we don’t have a significant price of carbon per ton to allow for a profound change in our economies, then it would be worthless. France has also been pushing for a reform of the carbon European Emissions Trading System (ETS). Carbon prices under the system, which charges companies for each ton of carbon dioxide they emit, have fallen to about 7 euros a ton from about 30 euros in 2008 because of a glut of permits.
…and zo on and zo forth. But all of this is vair silly, because as any fule kno, when you issue carbon permits, as the ETS does, you limit your emissions, because in your wisdom you have decided how much CO2 you wish to emit. So, a glut of permits means your schemes have been a brilliant success: emissions have indeed been limited, just as you wished. Had you wanted a price on carbon, you should have imposed a carbon tax instead. Obviously, no-one would suggest that the EU was too stupid to think of this; nor that the ETS was doomed from the start because a bunch of pols would certainly dish out an excess of permits to their favoured industries in order to buy votes, thereby totally undermining the scheme.
Is this all a bit negative? Couldn’t I at least give Macron some credit for at least wanting to raise the price, even if he’s a bit clueless about how to do it? Meh, maybe. Perhaps I’m being too radical. But I’d really rather him just to admit that the ETS is a failure, rip it up, and replace it with a carbon tax. Also, I suppose it is possible that Reuters have garbled his words; I haven’t found what he actually said. Furthermore there are hints about carbon tax in his election manifesto, but I haven’t found that, either. I did find Climat : Qu’est ce qu’il se joue réellement aujourd’hui au niveau mondial ? but apart from offering the amusement of Google translate turning “J’adhere” into “I adhesive”, wasn’t much use.
* Yet more carbon tax
* A response to a response to a proportionate response
* Rendre notre planète géniale à nouveau
* Macron’s ‘Make Climate Great Again’ campaign hires US scientists – although not literally; actually “Macron is scheduled to unveil some of the marquee scientists selected on December 12th”.