Economics Dictionary of Arguments

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Singer I 225
Emissions trading/climate change/altruism/J. E. HansenVsEmissions Trading/Hansen/Singer, P.: any system setting a general upper limit in a trading system, and...
I 226
...divides them into rights for nations, companies and individuals.
Problem: such schemes have a negative effect on altruistic behaviour: when I as an individual buy a hybrid vehicle, it does not reduce the total emissions of my country. These are rather cut by the agreed upper limit. My behaviour rather causes the price of conventional fuel to fall and makes it cheaper for other people to drive conventional vehicles.
Solution/Hansen: a tax on the carbon dioxide content in fuels. (Carbon Tax). The proceeds from this should be distributed equally among all inhabitants. That is what he calls the fee and dividend scheme.
This rewards those who reduce their carbon footprint and this reduces total emissions.
(J. E. Hansen et al."Target Atmospheric CO2: Where Shold Humanity Aim?" in: Open Atmosphere Science Journal, 2 (2008), pp. 17-31st - J. E. Hansen, "Cap and Fade", The New York Times, Dec 7,2009).
Paul KrugmanVsHansen: Emissions trading will reduce altruism in relation to the climate (like J. E. Hansen), but this altruism will not have the necessary effect anyway. (See KrugmanVsHansen).

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Hansen I
James E. Hansen
Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity London 2010

SingerP I
Peter Singer
Practical Ethics (Third Edition) Cambridge 2011

SingerP II
P. Singer
The Most Good You Can Do: How Effective Altruism is Changing Ideas About Living Ethically. New Haven 2015

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