Tag Archives: renewables

Italy proposes a carbon tax – go, Monti, go

4 Dec

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Introducing carbon taxes instead of the currently struggling European cap-and-trade (ETS) system would be a good idea. Let’s hope the Italians mean it, and that this enthusiasm will survive the upcoming elections.

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Let’s have Prohibition?

10 Sep

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The worse drought in the US in 50 years and sky-rocketing corn and food prices have called attention to the irrationality of biofuels again. But the truth is that ethanol and biodiesel have always been prohibitively expensive even without a drought, and not a good way to reduce CO2 emissions. Now would be (politically) the best time to stop forcing people to use them.

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The last minute solar party in southern Europe

27 Jul

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Solar power has been a booming business recently, thanks in part to fast declining costs, but more importantly governments that sprinkled it with lavish subsidies. And the curious thing was that the governments that could afford it the least were among the most generous. In 2011, almost a third of global solar capacity installations happened in Italy. Greece also tripled its solar capacity in 2011. It’s a good example how blatantly generous these governments have been at the brink of financial collapse – it was one last crazy party before the fall. And the party is followed by a nasty hangover: as subsidies are lowered, European solar producers shrink their capacities and/or whine about lower demand for their costly products.