Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Citizen Engagement in Carbon Tax Initiative

Social problem:
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions due to human activities are the main contributors to global climate change. This a problem should not be ignored but the current carbon credit mechanism introduced under the Kyoto Protocol has not shown much improvement in term of getting the less developed or developing countries to adopt better but more expensive technology which reduces GHG emission. Developing countries are able to earn certified emission reduction (CER) credits through emission reduction projects under Kyoto Protocol driven initiatives. The price of the carbon credits has been low due to less demand from the developed countries. In order to increase the demand of carbon credit, a form of carbon tax should be levied against entity/organizations which contribute to the GHG emission above a certain limit. Entities may purchase carbon credit to offset their GHG emission in order to reduce the carbon tax. This in turn will generate demand and prices of carbon credit and helping less developed countries to adopt more efficient technology.

Objective of citizen engagement initiative:
To call for all global citizens to address their support to carbon tax and carbon credits. This will lead to positive change in reducing GHG emission.

Key players:
  1.    The governments of developed and developing countries should spearhead this initiative and they are best placed to do so because carbon tax may increase the country’s treasury income and encourage their citizens to be more energy conscious. Although the carbon tax would increase the cost of doing business for the whole industries, the benefits of education and environment conservation are priceless especially when we are potentially facing the treat of non-reversible climate change due to GHG emission.
  2.   The target audience would be the global citizens. Participants are recruited by propaganda and social media.
  3.    I will partner with NGO, countries’ Ministry of Environmental and United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change.

The initiative works by:
  1.    Using blog and social media to reach my objectives because social media ride on internet without borders or at least less barrier than other means of tools such as regional press, paid mass media and etc.
  2.     My chosen tools enable me to use free internet and website to address my view and opinions as well as gather public’s views and comment to my initiatives.
  3.      A good initiative that has real benefit to the public and our beloved earth will eventually grow into a rolling snowball that will actually pushing the governments to take into consideration of the people’s voices.

Risks and opportunities:
The risks of this initiatives will be that it could invite attack from stakeholders especially those who are rich and benefitting from GHG emission related business. When social cause does have conflict of interest with business, thing’s get complicated and ugly especially when it involves billions of money. Strategy such as sincere research and understanding from the public can be used to gain support for priority of global sustainability.
The opportunities are that the initiatives would create a bigger market for saleable carbon credit and create jobs for the people while increasing the global productivity and efficiency among other. The carbon tax collected could be used for developing sustainable projects and building the capacity of human resource and education.


If this initiative is successful, we will see that the carbon tax actually encourage the demand and hence growth of global carbon credit market which can be measured on size of the market and the rise of the price of carbon credit. The stability of carbon credits’ prices would help and encourage less developed or developing countries to adopt more efficient technology or method instead of the usual old way that generate huge GHG emission. One carbon credit represents a tonne of carbon dioxide (or equivalent gases) removed or reduced from the atmosphere from an emission reduction project, which can be used, by governments, industry or private individuals to offset damaging carbon emissions that they are generating. The emission reductions would not have occurred without the combined initiative that the carbon credits provide.