THE Australian Government’s permanently jack-knifing and stalling emissions trading scheme is one of the most divisive public issues since… oh I don’t know… the separation of church and state or the day Greg told his brother Trevor to bowl underarm so the Kiwis couldn’t hit a six.
Already that attempt to put a cap on Australia’s emissions and create sellable carbon permits has helped to win one federal election (Kevin 07) and claimed at least one, and maybe two, opposition party leaders.
As things stand, if Labor leader Julia Gillard gets back in to Government then it’s going to be at least 2013 before Australia has a price on carbon. If Tony Abbott gets in, he won’t even be bowling underarm. He just won’t bowl.
No wonder then that it feels as if cap-and-trade is the only way out of this sorry mess. So to that end, I went looking for climate policies that are already in place in other parts of the world.
There are literally hundreds of them, from Brazillian mandates on biofuels, to carbon taxes, climate levies and even a national rewards scheme for buying low carbon products. There’s heavy rebates on cleaner cars, taxes on burning fossil fuels, feed-in tariffs for renewable energy and yes, there are emissions trading schemes across Europe and New Zealand.
It’s a rich policy landscape. To see the final 10 policies, have a look at my feature on the ABC Environment portal and leave your thoughts here or there.