Economist Ross McKitrick, who along with Steve McIntyre played a major role in discrediting Michael Mann’s “hockey stick” graph, has an interesting proposal for a carbon emissions tax tied to actual levels of warming. The tax would be linked to tropical troposphere temperatures, which I gather are generally agreed to be “the fingerprint of the CO2 contribution to warming.” As McIntyre points out: “If models are wrong and solar or something else is causing climate change, then it would have negligible impact. If models are right, then the tax would go up a lot.” On the other hand, if the tropical troposphere temperatures continue to decline as they have since 2002, then the tax would go negative and turn into a subsidy on carbon emissions. Of course, the alarmists are convinced this won’t happen so it shouldn’t be an obstacle to them endorsing the tax.
For more information read McKitrick’s article.
McKitrick has effectively laid down the gauntlet for both skeptics and alarmists by offering them a public policy proposal they both should be able to endorse, since both are convinced it will go their way. Only those of us who have independent moral and practical reasons for opposing any form of tax or subsidy whatsoever should have a good reason for not accepting the challenge.