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What happens after Bali - Corporate Knights maps a plan

Friday, December 14th 2007 3:55:41pm

Media Release
Attention: National, Political, Energy, and Assignment Editors

Bali Global Climate Protection Compact lays down challenge for rich and poor nations to join battle against global warming

(Nusa Dua, Bali, December 14, 2007) Corporate Knights, a Canadian-based sustainable development media and policy company, released an annual trillion-dollar climate protection compact to 120 environment ministers today as the UN climate change talks wrapped up in Bali.

"The world has spoken with one voice in Bali: climate change is the defining issue of our time.  Now we need a plan to carry us forward to a grand climate compact to be agreed upon no later than the UN Climate Meeting in Copenhagen in 2009," said Toby Heaps, Director of Corporate Knights and lead author of the proposal.

Heaps added, "While there are no silver bullets in the war on global warming, without a price on carbon, the gun is not even loaded," noting that because of the trillion dollar scale of the challenge, "we will need the same price on carbon everywhere or it won't work anywhere."

The Corporate Knights proposal, named Option 13 (as 2013 is when Kyoto expires) shows a clear way to a 2009 Copenhagen Compact that would satisfy two essential conditions for a successful climate agreement:  

• Establish a globally harmonized carbon price that is high
         enough to curb emissions at a level that keeps
         temperature increases to less than 2° Celsius
• Provide compelling incentives for developing nations to
         participate, including $100 billion per year in financing for
         the developing world to help preserve forests and to
         prepare for climate change (flood walls, improved
         irrigation, drought resistant crops, desalination facilities)

Option 13 will ask industrialized countries to agree to a common carbon cap and would commit developing countries to apply the carbon market determined price within their domestic economies in the form of a C02 tax which would kick in automatically following a grace period of five years.

Countries that chose not to comply would face stiff penalties, including countervailing duties.

"Planting a Global Climate Compact in the foundation of a polluter pays principle, provides developing countries with time and money to tackle GHG production while allowing their economies to grow. It will also minimize the chance for countries to become carbon-pollution havens," said Peter Diplaros, Option 13 co-author.

In his 2007 Nobel Prize acceptance speech, Al Gore called for putting a price on carbon as the overriding tool in the climate policy toolkit. Mr. Gore said,  "…we need to put a price on carbon--with a CO2 tax that is then rebated back to the people, progressively, according to the laws of each nation, in ways that shift the burden of taxation from employment to pollution. This is by far the most effective and simplest way to accelerate solutions to this crisis."

IPCC Chairman, Rajendra Pachauri, echoed Mr. Gore's comments and reiterated the importance of placing a price on carbon in his remarks to High Level Delegates at the UN Climate Change Conference.

"Clearly prudence, wisdom and the future of the human society clearly dictate that we have to take mitigation measures with a great sense of urgency…These policy changes will clearly have to target a number of measures, but one of them that is going to be absolutely crucial is placing a price on carbon. If we place a price on carbon, that will spur development of technologies and dissemination of technologies by which we might be able to save different parts of the world from some of the more serious effects of climate change that otherwise we would encounter."

May Jeong, Canadian Youth Delegation member to Bali and co-author of Option 13, believes it's now or never.

"I’m 20 years old and would like to come back to Bali with my children someday and not find it underneath a rising sea. The time to act is long overdue. Use this plan, or come up with something better, and do it fast."

To download the full report: http://www.option13.org/Option13.pdf


For further information:

In Bali:

Toby Heaps, 62 859 3532 5134,
May Jeong, 62 819 360 85562

Toronto Headquarters:

(416) 203-4674, toby@corporateknights.ca