Monday, March 23

"Winning the Carbon Game"

From Earth 3.0:

When it comes to perhaps the largest and most complex policy challenge facing the Obama administration—finally slowing the pace of global warming before dangerous changes become unstoppable—the new president stares down a Dickensian paradox. On the one hand, it’s the best of times for dealing with the issue. The Democratic-controlled Congress is itching for action, with environmentalist Californians Senator Barbara Boxer and Representative Henry Waxman at the head of key committees. And the problem has risen so much in visibility that many fossil-fuel companies have come to consider the capping of their greenhouse gas emissions a virtual inevitability. They have joined together in the U.S. Climate Action Partnership—a group featuring General Electric, DuPont, General Motors and many other major corporations—which has called for “cap and trade” legislation that would limit and then slowly ratchet down emissions.

Slide Show: Obama's Cabinet

Yet it’s also the worst of times to address global warming. The recession makes the enactment of strong climate protection policies—which are bound to raise the price of energy, at least in the short term—highly vulnerable to attack. Given the state of the economy, global warming simply cannot top the president’s agenda; ideally, though, progress on it would follow a breakneck timeline that some experts are already describing as impossible to meet. Read more...

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