05 Jan 2010

A Critique of Ross McKitrick’s Proposal to Tax Temperature

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At MasterResource today I critique economist Ross McKitrick’s proposal to tie CO2 taxes to global temperatures. (His idea is that if manmade global warming is really serious, then the tax will rise accordingly. But if it turns out the critics of the IPCC are right, then the tax will automatically stay modest.) Here’s the finale:

Ross McKitrick’s proposal to tie CO2 taxes to observed temperature trends is an interesting attempt to break out of the modelling log-jam, but ultimately I don’t think it will work. Even putting aside the serious theoretical difficulties in properly calibrating the tax, we could never trust the politicians to keep their word once they had enacted it.

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