Now we see the hidden costs of the ETS

Last night’s briefing on the ETS finally revealed the two missing columns from the curious page of numbers tabled in the House on Tuesday by Nick Smith.

That table, to the extent it was comprehensible at all, showed there would be a $415m cost to the taxpayer from now to 2013; a saving between 2013 and 2017; but numbers for later years were missing.

The full table occurs on page 33 of the explanatory note to the draft bill. The missing two columns, for 2020 and 2030, show a hefty annual cost to the Crown which by 2030 is estimated to be $2 billion every year. Isn’t that the same amount National can’t find the money for to put into the superannuation fund? It would also fund the completion of Auckland’s passenger rail network – in just one year – and take more cars off the road than the ETS will.

Your suggestions for what they should do with the $2 billion each year after that?

10 Comments Posted

  1. Heh. Also, costs are based on carbon price of $25/AAU. Funny that when they’re costing other people’s options, it’s $100/AAU, but when it’s their own, the price magically quarters itself.

  2. Not all ETS schemes are created equal.

    I’m beginning to wonder if National is deliberately making a complete dog’s breakfast of it, so that in the public’s eye emissions trading gets a bad rep

  3. Perhaps the insanity of having any form of ETS is now beginning to dawn on the dwellers of the lilly pond.

    And the one thing thats worse: it still doesn’t look like it’ll make one iota of a difference to the actual emissions…..

  4. Is John Key insane? (the less said about Smith the better).

    I suggest that with the money they erect a statue, to the men and women who gave our money away, and destroyed our climate.

    The only consolation is that this scheme will not last. It will cause us significant pain in the meantime however. I hear that Labour still wants to play this game, and I have to wonder if they are insane too.

  5. My immediate reaction is simply unprintable. $1 billion over 10 years to Methanex? $2 billion a year by 2030? Even turning it into today’s money we’re talking the entire annual cost of the police. Every year. To foreign polluters.

    That’s beyond simply bad policy – it is madness. It is neither environmentally nor fiscally sustainable, particularly in light of Bill English’s “decade of deficits” and the long-term costs of superannuation. It will have to be repealed, and the quicker it is done, the cheaper it will be.

    (And when it is, we should present Methanex, Rio Tinto etc – or maybe Nick Smith – with the bill)

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