The Copenhagen discussions really seem to be something of a dog's breakfast just at present if the media reports are to be believed.
In the meantime, in NSW the the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal has approved electricity price increases of around sixty per cent over the next three years. Part this is due to need to build capacity, a result of previous under-investment, part is based on the projected impact of the Australian Government's emission trading scheme should this come into effect.
In Getting rid of carbon 6 - emissions trading I started trying to tease out the possible shape of an international arrangement. I was doing this independent of what was actually on the table since my objective in this series of posts is to try to advance my own understanding. At the end of that post I said that I would discuss how such an international arrangement might work in Australia.
In thinking about this, I decided to look again at the current proposed Australian scheme. In doing so, I realised that my original description of cap and trade was greatly over-simplified. Rereading the Garnuat report, I found that I did not actually understand just how the Australian scheme might work in practice.
Perhaps the simplest explanation I have found is on the Australian Parliament House site. This refers to an earlier version of the Bill, but still sets out structures and principles in a way that is, I think, understandable to the lay reader.
With the end of Copenhagen just a week away, I have decided to put this series of posts on hold for the present. It seems more sensible to wait until we know the results.
In the meantime, I have achieved my immediate objective of advancing my own understanding!
I remain of the view that the whole debate has suffered because people moved to solutions too early and too rigidly without reviewing all the alternatives.
I have also decided as a side-effect, to increase my reporting on this blog on Australian rural and regional issues. There is, I think, a real problem here because of the increasing disconnect between metro Australia and the rest of the country. I also think that some of my international readers might find this interesting simply because it is different.