Why ‘Zero Carbon’ promises will not work

Whatever is necessary to save the Ecosphere, invariably the decision makers, be they individuals, firms, or even nations in competition with the rest, must apparently always choose short term advantage over long term catastrophe

The threat to the Ecosphere is now too urgent to wonder why. For now, I simply produce Exhibit A, to demonstrate its truth.

My mind seems to work differently from most others .Not only did I see the need for a way to limit consumerism to planetary limits some decades ago, I suggested how it could be done, but no one took any notice. But I am desperate to save the Ecosphere, if that is still possible, so here is my scheme:

Ecological footprint taxes are an obvious way of ensuring that economic activity stays within what the Ecosphere can sustain, but they would be politically unrealistic – unless hrship is ruled out for individuals. Theymust somehow be guaranteed basic needs – an unconditional basic income.

A Basic Income already has a large and growing following, but although I see it as necessary, I also see it as dangerous , unless firmly tied to eco-taxes, because it will otherwise lead to more growth – precisely what we must inhibit.

If there is anything better than this admittedly dangerous plan, I hope someone has one in mind. But Exhibit A does not leave us with much room for maneouvre.

(I am grateful to Sandy Irvine for drawing my attention to this ‘The conversation’ post.)

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