Carbonomics is a book that tackles energy and climate policy together. Right now, “drill baby drill” and “save the planet,” are out to kill each other. But when OPEC first used its “oil weapon” against the US and Europe, the global response was to fight the OPEC cartel, and the Republicans did that by organizing a counter cartel (the IEA) to fight OPEC.
The first Republican policy was good for energy independence and good for the environment. And that’s the kind of policy we need today. But it’s been subverted.
Now the IEA is working closely with OPEC and the the US oil industry has an official advisory committee inside the US Department of Energy.
- Who’s the biggest fan of OPEC? Exxon !!
- Who’s the biggest enemy of global climate policy? OPEC !!
Of course this means Exxon is also against climate policy and so is the coal industry. But oil is the key to the energy/climate problem, because oil is where the money is. To fight this much money, we need a clever political strategy based on sound economics. Environmentalist have done a pretty good job of sounding one alarm, but the Republicans, back in the 1970’s, actually did much better on the policy-economics front, although, in the end, the oil industry took them over.
Carbonomics covers both national and international policies. Here’s a sample.
There’s Money on the Table.
China Gets It. Gore Doesn’t.
China cares about global warming, but it knows how to bargain. Gore just cares: “If the United States leads,China will follow.” Wrong!
Exxon Profits Highest Ever — $45 Billion
Pelosi Confused on Cap and Trade
“You cap and you trade [to] pay for investments in energy independence.” No, actually, that’s the reason. Cap and trade was invented by economists, and its purpose was to put a price on pollution—not to raise money for environmental subsidies. Economists hate that! What economists recommend (listen up Nancy) is a revenue-neutral carbon tax — one that raises no money for subsidies. And the best such tax is the untax, which doesn’t raise any money for anything — so it’s not really a tax.
The Untax — No revenue, no subsidies. It just works.
Tax oil refineries and coal mines. That will raise energy prices. But refund all the tax revenues on a per-person basis just like Alaska does with its Permanent Fund. This will be stronger environmentally than a cap-and-trade tax that charges as much on average! And, the refunds will cover what we pay in higher energy prices.