Monday, May 14, 2007

Let the wrangling begin

US President Bush has announced that he will push lawmakers to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, as was more or less required by a recent Supreme Court decision.

This should be a momentous day. Unfortunately, with the track record of the Bush Administration on this issue, it is hard to know what this announcement will actually mean.

In the coming days and weeks, there will be much debate about the merit of market-based strategies vs. actual standards and regulations. There will also be, at least there should be, much consternation about the long-term consequences of 'mitigation-light' (ie. weak emission reductions legislation that falsely convinces that public and lawmakers that climate change is being 'solved').

It is too soon to predict. Hopefully, with all that has come to pass in North America over the past several years, and with the public pasting that the Canadian government has taken on climate policy, the Bush Administration and Congress will at least have the sense not to use intensity-based emissions targets this time.

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