Today, Former Vice President Al Gore gave a major speech on global warming at NYU law. Notably, he called for an immediate freeze on CO2 emissions:
Well, first of all, we should start by immediately freezing CO2 emissions and then beginning sharp reductions. Merely engaging in high-minded debates about theoretical future reductions while continuing to steadily increase emissions represents a self-delusional and reckless approach. In some ways, that approach is worse than doing nothing at all, because it lulls the gullible into thinking that something is actually being done when in fact it is not.
An immediate freeze has the virtue of being clear, simple, and easy to understand. It can attract support across partisan lines as a logical starting point for the more difficult work that lies ahead.
Gore also called for the complete elimination of the payroll tax. It would be replaced by a tax on CO2:
For the last fourteen years, I have advocated the elimination of all payroll taxes — including those for social security and unemployment compensation — and the replacement of that revenue in the form of pollution taxes — principally on CO2. The overall level of taxation would remain exactly the same. It would be, in other words, a revenue neutral tax swap. But, instead of discouraging businesses from hiring more employees, it would discourage business from producing more pollution.
This is an opportunity for bipartisanship and transcendence, an opportunity to find our better selves and in rising to meet this challenge, create a better brighter future — a future worthy of the generations who come after us and who have a right to be able to depend on us.
Read the full text of the speech here.