Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Gore the Pure

Environmental support comes at a cost- Gore the Pure

“Nobel laureate Al Gore is unlikely to run (for Presidency) again. His Ideas are catching on, but people still don’t want to pay for them.”

One man who seems to always gain media attention is the former vice president, Al Gore. He is a main proponent of many controversial issues that have an impact on environmental economics. Global warming is one concern for many Americans that is gaining recognition. “The proportion of Americans who say they worry ‘a great deal’ about global warming has risen from 28% to 41% in the past four years. Over the same period, the proportion favoring ‘immediate, drastic action’ to protect the environment has risen from 23% to 38%.” Where these percentages came from is not listed in the article, but it raises the questions regarding why there is a sudden concern about the environment. Clearly changes that are made regarding America’s use of energy and emissions will have an impact on the nation’s economy. For the 2008 election it seems that candidates will have to take some sort of stand on what type of policy they will enforce regarding the environment because it is a hot issue that is not going away any time soon.

… no plausible candidate of either party favours a carbon tax, the most efficient way to tackle emissions… Voters prefer solutions that are either cheap or that they thing will be paid for by someone else. A poll for the New Scientist magazine in June tried to quantify this, with sobering results. Only half of Americans would favour rules to force power companies to emit less if that raised their monthly electricity bill from $85 9the average in 20050 to $155 (an estimate of the hike needed to lower American emissions by 5% by 2020). And only 37% could stomach a tax that raised petrol (gasoline) prices to $4 a gallon.

Given these results from the poll it is hard to imagine that any candidate will garner much support if they support making changes such as the ones given as examples above. “You cannot win the White House by telling Americans that they must pay more to drive, or by telling Midwestern coalminers that their industry must clean up or die.” Although it is not certain whether there is really a significant climate change, or global warming, the issue has consumed a substantial portion of media attention and will be addressed politically and have wide reaching economic effects.


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