Wednesday, November 14, 2007

'State of the Carbon Cycle' in North America Released

U.S. (TGW) – The first “State of the Carbon Cycle of Report” for North America was released today by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program.

It found the ‘carbon budget increasingly overwhelmed by human-caused emissions’.

"By burning fossil fuel and clearing forests human beings have significantly altered the global carbon cycle," says Chris Field of the Carnegie Institution's Department of Global Ecology, one of the report's lead authors.

The report warns that natural reducers of carbon dioxide are taking in less carbon dioxide, because of human activity and the fact that they can only take in so much CO2.

"There are a lot of good reasons for replenishing our forests and encouraging better agricultural practices," says Ken Caldeira, another author of the report, also at Carnegie's Department of Global Ecology. "But if we want to mitigate our impact on the carbon cycle, there's no escaping the fact that we need to drastically reduce carbon dioxide emissions."

Via :: Science Daily


Anonymous said...

The cost to business of trapping CO2 emissions at their industrial source can be mitigated by subsidies. This would make a substantial dent in CO2 emissions without affecting a business’ ability to compete in the marketplace.

Companies can trap CO2 at their factories now with existing and (currently) costly technology. The government should give them subsidies, equal to their added costs, if they purchase and use the technology. As the technology goes down in price, as it inevitably will, subsidies will be adjusted and then phased out accordingly.

It is ill advised to expect businesses, especially businesses that compete globally, to fund CO2 reducing measures on their own. They will not be competitive. Subsidies will keep industry's costs as competitive with American and world markets as they are today, no more and no less. American consumers, as well as overseas buyers, will buy a company’s products based on the same cost basis as before implementation because the added cost of the technology will be offset by the inverse cost of the subsidy. Because this relates to cost and not price, no artificially low prices result and no retaliatory measures by other countries will be anticipated.

The American people would pay for the cost of these subsidies through various means. Direct price increases for some goods, or possibly taxes of some kind. These costs will not be large when shared by all and will decrease as the cost of the technology goes down.

Subsidizing mitigation of industrial CO2 emissions would add to our arsenal of techniques for curtailing global warming. A democratic president with CO2 mitigation as a priority could get this done. The window of opportunity may be upon us.