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Editorial: The case for a sensible carbon tax

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Los Angeles Times:Exxon Mobil made a bit of a splash Tuesday when it announced a $1-million, two-year donation to the Republican-led Americans for Carbon Dividends, an organization pushing for a national tax to help curtail emissions of atmosphere-warming carbon. A carbon tax is aimed at making the burning of fossil fuels — which releases carbon — more expensive, and thus directing consumer behavior away from carbon-spewing energy and driving investment toward carbon-free alternatives. It’s a sound approach, one this page endorsed more than a decade ago, and better than the related cap-and-trade plans, which California has used since 2012.But the plan that Exxon Mobil is throwing its money at — pocket change, really, for a corporation that made nearly $20 billion last year — is less than it seems. Called the Baker-Schultz plan after two of its authors, former Republican secretaries of State James A. Baker III and George P. Schultz, the plan calls for gradually increasing the per-ton carbon tax to reduce the risk of market shock, and for returning the proceeds to consumers on a per-capita basis through the Social Security Administration. Everyone gets the same amount of cash, but those who use less carbon-emitting energy will pay less tax — giving them a powerful incentive to conserve. So far, all good. And a set rate helps companies better anticipate their costs; businesses like stability and predictability.But there’s always a but, it seems. The Baker-Schultz plan also includes a waiver that would let oil companies and other emitters off the hook for past acts contributing to global warming, preempting the many lawsuits filed against them. And it would undo the Clean Power Plan and other federal regulations covering carbon dioxide emissions. That makes this sound less like a smart plan to reduce carbon than a toxic quid pro quo — “OK, we’ll go for a carbon tax if these lawsuits go away and we get sharper deregulation.” Another plan, pushed by the Citizens Climate Lobby and other groups, would similarly escalate the per-ton tax over time and return the proceeds in a per-capita dividend, without the corporate giveaways. That’s a better option.Los Angeles Times: A carbon tax is a good idea — so long as it doesn’t come with industry handouts Editorial: The case for a sensible carbon taxlast_img read more

Gbinije prepares for return to raucous Cameron environment to face former Blue Devils team again

first_imgGbinije still doesn’t play.Those were the words, chanted in a loud cadence by the Cameron Crazies, that Michael Gbinije heard as he warmed up in Cameron Indoor Stadium a year ago. In Gbinije’s first return to Durham, North Carolina, after transferring to the Orange after the 2011–12 season, the Blue Devils crowd was quick to point out that the forward had moved from one bench to another. That he was, in their eyes, irrelevant.But now, with Syracuse (18-10, 9-6 Atlantic Coast) traveling to No. 4 Duke (24-3, 11-3) for a 7 p.m. game on Saturday, not even one of the country’s most passionate cheering sections can make that claim. In Syracuse’s 80-72 loss to the Blue Devils on Feb. 14, Gbinije scored 19 first-half points and Duke shot 39 percent from the field — yet he tallied just eight on five shots in the second half and the SU offense consequently stalled.So for the Orange to have any chance at upsetting the Blue Devils for a second straight win against a Top 10 team, it needs Gbinije to pace its offense for 40 minutes.“Mike is a big part of just about everything we do,” SU point guard Kaleb Joseph said after the Orange beat then-No. 12 Louisville on Feb. 18. “Offensively we need him to create and shoot the ball well. A lot comes down to how Mike plays. He knows that.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textGbinije arrived at Duke as ESPN’s 29th-ranked recruit in the Class of 2011 but there was nowhere for him to play in his freshman year. Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski also brought in third-ranked recruit Austin Rivers, 35th-ranked prospect Marshall Plumlee, 38th-ranked recruit Quinn Cook and Alex Murphy, ranked No. 41.Of the five freshmen, Gbinije played the least minutes and took just 20 shots in 19 games. He also played the second least of the team’s 11 scholarship players — who made up the whole roster — trailing the next most used player, sophomore forward Josh Hairston, by 135 minutes on the season.So when Gbinije entered Cameron Indoor having scored in double figures just once on the season last February, the Crazies saw him as the same player who couldn’t crack Krzyzewski’s rotation.In an eventual Syracuse loss, Gbinije scored eight first-half points and was on the court down the stretch. SU head coach Jim Boeheim called it his “best game of the year.” It was a foreshadow for the scoring threat that has hatched this season.“Look, we recruited Mike because we thought he was good, so that doesn’t surprise me,” Krzyzewski said after Duke beat the Orange on Feb. 14. “I wish he stayed. He didn’t, and he’s a great kid and he’s playing for a great coach.”After slicing up Duke in that first half with five 3s on six attempts and a pair of savvy moves to the basket, Gbinije was blanketed by Cook in the second as the Blue Devils pulled away. After the game, Cook said he knows some of his former roommate’s moves and that he’ll likely match up with Gbinije in the teams’ next meeting.Two weeks ago, Rakeem Christmas and Trevor Cooney each scored 11 points as Duke paid particular attention to the duo. And after his torrid first half, Gbinije received similar treatment and wilted when it mattered most.But the junior has still scored under 10 points just once in conference play and, though cooling down after a six-game hot streak, is most capable of making sure the Blue Devils can’t shut out all three of SU’s go-to scorers.And the thought of doing that in front of the same heckling fans brought a devious smile to his face.“I want to beat them, they’re a good team obviously,” Gbinije said after Syracuse’s win over No. 9 Notre Dame on Tuesday night. “But who doesn’t want to beat Duke? Especially in Cameron. I haven’t done that yet, so hopefully I can do that this year.” Comments Published on February 26, 2015 at 1:41 am Contact Jesse: jcdoug01[email protected] | @dougherty_jesse Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more