~ Big Oil and its apologists inveigh endlessly against a carbon tax and its twinned alternate, a cap-and-trade (or cap-and-dividend) system. Why? Because it will destroy the economy of course!
Burdening oil and other forms of carbon energy with fully pricing their currently externalized costs would dramatically boost the cost of energy, impoverishing consumers and stunting business investment! Economic growth with slow, stop, or even reverse! So we are told.
However, in our northern provincial neighbor, BC, the economy seems to be doing just fine despite several years of an innovative application of just such a measure.
None of the dire predictions of economic catastrophe have come to pass, and there is no longer political opposition to having such a tax. There is a simple and straightforward object lesson here about the hysterical voices in the US Congress shrilling shrieking shibboleths of doom and devastation: they're wrong.Now Norway is set to do something even more ambitious—more than doubling their existing carbon tax on their (thriving) oil industry. Can they really do that?
Ranking third among the world's oil exporters, with production peaking at 3m barrels of oil a day, Norway has 51 active oil and gas fields in the North Sea, and believes it has more than 7bn barrels of undiscovered reserves. Its oil and gas sector is the world's richest: its employees earn $180,000 on average a year.Let's see if the Norwegian economy collapses. Somehow, I doubt it.
With a population of 5 million - the same as Scotland - it is the third wealthiest country per capita in the world thanks to its oil and gas exports. Norway's plans to offset the impacts of its oil exports on the world's climate come as it also proposes to expand oil exploration into the Barents Sea to the far north.
Richard Dixon, director of WWF Scotland, said: "Norway is showing how you can use oil income to fund the transition out of oil, we should be doing the same with UK oil revenues. The Scottish National Party have always been keen on the Norwegian oil fund, and now it is setting an example really worth following."