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碳红利优于碳税

萨拉索塔—气候变化是世界最紧迫的问题,而在美国,至少左派是认真对待这个问题的。今年早些时候,同为民主党人的纽约州众议员亚历山德里亚·奥卡西奥-克尔特兹(Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez)和马萨诸塞州参议员爱德华·马尔基(Edward Markey)提出了绿色新政(GND)方案,为美国提供了经济去碳化蓝图。但是,尽管越来越多的民主党总统竞争者支持他们的方案,中间派民主党共和党仍然坚持不同的气候政策方针。

关键的中间派方案符合流行的新自由主义思路,即碳税。其思维很简单:如果你对化石燃料进入经济的入口征税——不管是在井口、矿中还是港口——就能充分捕获污染的社会成本。用经济学的术语,这被称为庇谷税,因为它是为了纠正市场的不良结果,即英国经学家亚瑟·庇谷(Arthur Pigou)所谓的负外部性——在这个例子中,就是要为全球变暖负责的温室气体排放。

作为气候变化的应对之道,碳税立即在横跨整个政治谱系的经济学家中大受欢迎,它也确实有着重要的作用。但它还远远不够。经济想要以经济平等、政治可行的方式实现迅速去碳化,需要绿色新政级别的全面方案。这意味着结合某些基于市场的政策和大规模私人和公共部门投资,并仔细地起草环境监管。

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  1. skidelsky147_Christoph Soederpicture alliance via Getty Images_policechristmasmarketgermany Christoph Soeder/picture alliance via Getty Images

    The Terrorism Paradox

    Robert Skidelsky

    As the number of deaths from terrorism in Western Europe declines, public alarm about terrorist attacks grows. But citizens should stay calm and not give governments the tools they increasingly demand to win the “battle” against terrorism, crime, or any other technically avoidable misfortune that life throws up.

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