The political establishment are pushing carbon taxes as a solution to climate change. It is an attempt to shift responsibility onto individuals while avoiding taking the necessary political action.
Studies in Norway and British Colombia indicate that carbon taxes lead to only a 1-2% reduction in carbon. If governments impose taxes and do not provide alternatives, people will still rely on fossil fuels.
Taxes on petrol amount to 90 cent, making up 60% of the price in Ireland – but we still remain one of the most car dependent societies in the world because governments has refused to invest in public transport.
Poorer people will be hit harder by carbon taxes because they have less money to pay for a switch to different forms of energy.
This is why People Before Profit favour an entirely different approach.
We have introduced a Climate Emergency Bill into the Dail to leave fossil fuels in the ground.
We want a major investment programme to expand the bus fleet – and then to move to free public transport to get people out of cars.
We want to reverse the expansion of the cattle herd and shift agricultural production towards fruit and vegetables.
We want to establish a not-for profit publicly run company to carry out a national programme of home insulation.
We want public investment in renewable energy and a break from relying on private companies to make the change.
The political establishment favour carbon taxes because they are opposed to state intervention in the market. People Before Profit, however, believe that system change is a necessary to tackle climate change. .