Nature Blog Network Future Earth: Personal Carbon

Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Personal Carbon

Personal carbon trading - shelved on May 8th, brought back off the shelf before it could even gather dust on May 27th. Is this rapid return to prominence because it is a really good idea, despite its dishing by Defra, or to distract from political difficulty at the top? Cynacism aside, what do we think of it? Arjay is in two minds...

The negative one says it will be absolutely unworkable, absorb a host of effort on bureaucracy that could be more usuefully applied to beneficial activity, focus too heavily on quotas and distract attention from reducing use overall. Those who have experienced Government running a rationing scheme of any kind (my parents in wartime for example) knows it will lead to abuse and illegality too.

But the positve one wonders whether it will be worthwhile whatever the problems as a tool for generating awareness of the issues and behavioural change at the individual level. Spreading around the world, might it turn this row of motorbikes snapped recently in Indonesia back to a row of bicyles before they become a row of cars?

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