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7 responses to “Reflections of an oil sands visionary”

  1. Ujjayant Chakravorty

    flack? colleagues? sorry to have missed your talk but if there is a video somewhere, please let me know..will love to watch

  2. David Laughton

    I enjoyed your presentation last night, and parts of the discussion afterwards.

    Three points.

    0) Have you posted your slides?
    If so, where?
    If not, when and where do you plan to do so?

    1) If I recall correctly, you think that a starting point for global policy should be that emission charges are equalised across the globe.

    If I am wrong, I hope your slides will clarify this.

    If I am right, I have the following questions.

    What is an example of global emission charge schedule would curtail total expected future global emissions to 500 Gtonnes of CO2 equivalent?

    How does an allocation to each sovereign jurisdiction of a global 500 Gtonne emissions allowance based on an equal per capita sharing using 1990 populations compare with the implicit expected allocation resulting from the global emissions charge schedule mentioned in the last question?

    2) I did not quite catch the details of you fee-bate proposal for Alberta, and look forward to clarification from your slides.

    I have an as yet incompletely specified question about your proposal, which I may formulate more completely once I see your slides.

    How do the wealth transfers from your proposal compare with an alternative of a emissions charge set at the level of your fee that finances a “general” tax reduction structured to maintain the current vertical equity structure in Alberta as much as possible?

  3. Colin Soskolne

    I have just noticed the reply below that I sent directly on March 7 does not appear to have been posted to your Blog. So, I am doing so now (below):

    Dear Andrew:

    Many thanks for taking the time to respond to me. I appreciate it.

    Despite your interesting reply, however, I feel that you have not actually answered my question.

    Does the discipline of economics not have a way of addressing the need for a radical shift in paradigm in response to a looming and, indeed, an unfolding crisis? I fear that any delays by offering different modes of “bean counting” contributes to delaying urgently needed action.

    Of course, we are constrained by our values and the dominant paradigm in not only how we see a problem, but certainly also as to how we might frame it and respond to it.

    In this regard, I happened to watch a 2 hr and 40 minute-long docu-drama about neo-liberalism called “Encirclement” (NFB of Canada, 2008). I believe that it provides so many of the answers to questions such as these. So, I highly recommend the viewing of this film. You can learn more about accessing the DVD at the following link: The production arm is at: It is in French with some English (interviews with Noam Chomsky), but with excellent English sub-titles throughout. This is a MUST SEE educational experience in my view.

    Some of us see the world’s ecological integrity as being in dangerously precipitous decline, and finding answers to what are clearly complex problems is vexing, to say the least. So, please keep doing whatever it takes to help us move to a safer place for both present and future generations, not only in the interests of the rich, but of all people globally.

    Best wishes and regards,
    Colin Soskolne

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