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Brooks Wilson's Economics Blog: Is Sarkozy Getting Cold Feet Over Global Warming?

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Is Sarkozy Getting Cold Feet Over Global Warming?

HT Drudge)  I don't know what to make out of the story by Financial Times writer, Ben Hall, ("Sarkozy in climate row over reshuffle,") that French President Sarkozy plans to appoint a climate-change sceptic to an important ministry.  It may mean that French leaders, like Australian, are growing cautious about imposing carbon taxes that at best impose an intergenerational transfer that harms current voters to benefit future voters, and at worst, imposes a tax with no future benefits.  It may mean nothing more than Sarkozy likes Allegre.  Key elements of the story read,
President Nicolas Sarkozy's desire to appoint an outspoken climate-change sceptic to a new French super-ministry of industry and innovation has drawn strong protests from party colleagues and environmentalists.

Claude Allègre argues that global warming is not necessarily caused by human activity. Putting him in charge of scientific research would be tantamount to "giving the finger to scientists", said Nicolas Hulot, France's best-known environmental activist...

Alain Juppé, the former centre-right prime minister, said the appointment would send a "terribly bad signal" ahead of international negotiations to secure a successor to the Kyoto treaty on cuts to carbon emissions.

One critic said that associating Mr Allègre with the government's ambitious environmental policy was like putting "organic farming alongside Chernobyl".

Mr Allègre hit back at his critics and their "lies and distortions" about his record and beliefs. The climate was certainly changing, he said, but not all the reasons for it were known. "As a scientist and citizen, I, unlike others, do not want environmentalism to accentuate the crisis or make the least well-off suffer more," he said.

1 comment:

  1. Personally, I don't know enough on global warming to pick a side. However, Sarkozy's decision is baffling. The Kyoto Treaty is a major focus for many leading countries and for him to choose Mr. Allegre in a time where people have fear of global warming, is like him turning his back on his people.