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« Q9: Bush or Kerry? | Main | Q11: Open primaries »



I am in agreement with DD on this one. Signing up to costly carbon trading arrangements unilaterally would give our economy a ball and chain, while others not signed up will become more competitive. Technology is our only hope.


Well, we knew what to expect from Cameron on this. "I don’t see these as alternatives."

Here's why that's disingenuous: of course one can pursue both, but that's not what's behind the issue (as Cameron must know). The choice is whether one supports technological solutions too. Of course evryone hopes for technological solutions. It's whether you also support Kyoto, which, as the Editor points out, does little or nothing, yet costs hugely.

Cameron does support Kyoto as a key measure. Very bad.

DD doesn't reject Kyoto either, which is disappointing, but he clearly states where his emphasis is, and more than hints he sees through the nonsense (such as that laughable 'powerful new body' of his, the Carbon Audit Office!)


Of course I was referring to the Cameron/Letwin initiative, not DD, with "that laughable 'powerful new body' of his, the Carbon Audit Office"

Kate Castle

If we ignore Kyoto we are back to stage one - nothing. I agree more with Cameron on this, and he also brought the subject up earlier in the campaign without being questioned, while I've not heard Davis even address it until today. Supporting development of tomorrow's technology is vital, but Kyoto binds large areas of the world together now in combatting global warming, it is far from ideal, but better than crossing our fingers that new technology is just around the corner.


Well no one in their right minds is going to say advancing technology has no place in their strategy.But it is nowhere near enough.Much harder multi country decisions are going to have to be made.The major polluters including India,China,the USA and Britain will in the end have to pay.Yes, it will be economically damaging but the enviromental impact of doing nothing as we are at the moment (or virtually) will be even more damaging in the long term.

Mark Fulford

Sometimes politics is a game. On this answer, Cameron is playing the game better. The average voter equates Kyoto and good. Conservatives in opposition aren't going to reverse that conception and, if they try, they'll be branded uncaring environmental vandals. It's a label that people love to stick on us. Cameron's answer has more voter appeal and, ultimately, that's what we need. That said, I do believe that Cameron has more respect for the problem.


Agree that in political game DC is positioning himself on the Green side - problem is he's (against the overall strategy) being too precise here and laying down a hostage to fortune. The Carbon Audit Office is a statist solution - looking at technolgical alternatives might upset the more hair shirted Greens but would be more aceptable and effective. I have no problems with targets - California achieved great changes in US auto industry by putting those on place & driving technological solutions to meet State Law - but not another quango please.

Daniel Vince-Archer

"An independent monitoring and forecasting body, a Carbon Audit Office."

Cameron's quango has a name! Just out of interest, what does he propose to do with the Carbon Trust?

Hank J Bloodsucker III

Hey, Mister Editor, really appreciate your fine words on this one. The boys at Texas Oil 'n' Filth Corporation are just thrilled to bits with with the Asia Pacific Partnership on Clean Development. Send a bunch of junior diplomats to talk about saving the whole goddam planet with a bunch of forners and we don't have to do a goddam thing about it. That's my kind of environmentalism!


When the greenies lose the arguments they resort to smearing. Well done Hank!

James Hellyer

"Cameron's quango has a name!"

It's new. It's powerful. It's a body. And it has a name. How impressive.


This specific policy has far more importance in the medium term than the long term (global warming). It is really about energy provision for a maturing economy. If we fail to provide enough energy to support the industries that we rely on for our income (whether they be basic manufacturing or high-tech service) then we are screwed.
In the medium term I believe only nuclear energy can provide our needs but this is electoral disaster territory. I can only see a PM in the first year of office taking this step.
Oh and on both canditates views, they have ducked out of reality just as our present government has done. Feeble all round.


Disclaimer: In case any greeny is reading this I am not in the pay of the nuclear lobby (which of course would discount my statements however valid they were).

Ian Sider

The Editor poses an uncharacteristically misleading question: Technology or Kyoto? As both DC and DD state its not either/or but both/and. Or rather its both technology and improved successor to Kyoto. The Asia Pacific Partnership is PR stunt not a serious attempt at tackling climate change -- though I'll happily retract that statement the moment the ACPCD produces a single result of any significance. As for the Copenhagen Consensus, it is based on the mistaken notion that any money that polluters don't have to pay will be used instead to fight malaria etc. Quite obviously it won't be. Instead it will boost the profits of our dirtiest, most inefficient industries, while accelerated global warming causes yet more misery for the developing world.

The Editor does however concede the need for "added government-led incentivisation of technological development and adoption" Well that is the point of DC's Carbon Audit Office: to price in the cost of carbon in a manner informed by the best avaiable scientific advice and which will provide technology investors with a comparatively objective and predictable set of market indicators. This is greatly to be prefered to a stop-go system of grants and subsidies which the government of the day will dish out according to political expendiency and whichever companies bung a few quid into the election fighting fund.

Daniel Vince-Archer

"When the greenies lose the arguments they resort to smearing. Well done Hank!"

I hope you're not lumping me in with Hank, Editor. His mindless sentiments are not indicative of the sentiments that other greenies hold.


Not at all Daniel.

My favourite US bumper sticker is:


Whoever wrote Hank's comment reminded me of that sticker.

Hank J Bloodsucker III

Aw c'mon Mr Editor, as you know I am an entirely fictional character who exaggerates to make a point.

And the point is this: That the APPCD is a talking shop, that allows polluters to pollute without paying for it.

Are you suggesting that those oil companies that fund the think tanks that advocate the APPCD approach aren't in fact happy that they don't have to pay for their pollution?

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