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Fighting Climate Change With Trade

samzenpus posted about a month ago | from the passing-on-the-savings dept.

Earth 155

mdsolar writes with this story about the possible elimination of tariffs on environmental goods between the world's largest economic powers. The United States, the European Union, China and 11 other governments began trade negotiations this week to eliminate tariffs on solar panels, wind turbines, water-treatment equipment and other environmental goods. If they are able to reach an agreement, it could reduce the cost of equipment needed to address climate change and help increase American exports. Global trade in environmental goods is estimated at $1 trillion a year and has been growing fast. (The United States exported about $106 billion worth of such goods last year.) But some countries have imposed import duties as high as 35 percent on such goods. That raises the already high cost of some of this equipment to utilities, manufacturers and, ultimately, consumers. Taken together, the countries represented in these talks (the 28 members of the E.U. negotiate jointly, while China and Hong Kong are represented by separate delegations) account for about 86 percent of trade in these products, which makes the potential benefit from an agreement substantial. Other big countries that are not taking part in these talks, like India, South Africa and Brazil, could choose to join later.

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Oh good. (-1, Troll)

Kernel Kurtz (182424) | about a month ago | (#47443177)

Another climate change thread.

Let the fun begin!

Re:Oh good. (0)

Twelfth Harmonic (3464759) | about a month ago | (#47443323)

Rent is too damn high!

Re:Oh good. (1)

davester666 (731373) | about a month ago | (#47444355)

it's getting warming, so just live outside!

The Rules of Climate Change (0, Flamebait)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about a month ago | (#47443331)

The first rule of Global Warming is: Every impact is negative.
The second rule of Global Warming is: Every impact is negative.
Third rule of Global Warming: If someone pauses, roll eyes, questions, or in any way doubts any claims or speculations related to Global Warming, its causes or its impacts, they are to be labeled as deniers.
Fourth rule of Climate Change: We can change the name whenever we want.
Fifth rule of Climate Change: Solutions do not need to consider cost or economic impact, human or societal behaviors, or likelihood of success domestically or internationally.

Re:The Rules of Climate Change (0)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about a month ago | (#47444747)

Folks around here have no sense of humor. Get over it.

Re:The Rules of Climate Change (2)

TapeCutter (624760) | about a month ago | (#47446185)

An incompetent comedian blames his audience.

more conspiracy theory nonsense (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443183)

Climate change was already debunked. Enough of these articles already.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (1)

robsku (1381635) | about a month ago | (#47443635)

Climate change denialism was already debunked. Enough of this spam of mine already.

There, FTFY.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443823)

I just turned on all the hot taps in my house and am running the AC with the windows open. Every time I hear a warmunist from the Church of Climatology I increase my waste as much as possible.

Real scientists have better solutions than making everyone live like cavemen or the Amish to solve the problem.

What a puke you are, you and your AGW horse-shit.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (2)

Immerman (2627577) | about a month ago | (#47443865)

Who gave you the idea that we have to significantly reduce our standards of living to combat global warming? Only the CO2 production causes problems, and there's lots of alternative energy technologies on the cusp of being truly cost competitive - if not for the vast direct and indirect subsidies to the fossil fuel industry it would already be crumbling under the onslaught of cheaper alternatives.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444795)

Who gave you the idea that we have to significantly reduce our standards of living to combat global warming? Only the CO2 production causes problems, and there's lots of alternative energy technologies on the cusp of being truly cost competitive - if not for the vast direct and indirect subsidies to the fossil fuel industry it would already be crumbling under the onslaught of cheaper alternatives.

Fact check: people like the parent poster are claiming things like "the (nebulous) cost of road congestion", "the cost of the Iraq war", and "cost of 'pollution'" as "fossil fuel subsidies" [imf.org] .

So, go ahead and buy the line that Immerman is selling... enjoy your $10/gallon gas thanks to additional taxes, because any price less than that is "subsidized" according to people like Immerman. The "cheaper alternatives" his ilk claim are available don't exist they play disingenuous semantic games by redefining traditional fuels as far more expensive than they actually are, a "problem" to be corrected by taxes on traditional fuels, according to them.

I, for one, don't wish to wear a hair shirt forced upon me by misanthropic crusaders that want to tax away my remaining discretionary income in order to prop up their imaginary eco-utopia. Go live in a poor house by yourself, Immerman, and enjoy your oxymoronic claim of maintained standards of living while simultaneously having massive regressive tax increases on consumables like fuel and food.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (1)

Trepidity (597) | about a month ago | (#47446189)

You know, we have $10/gal gas in Denmark, and are not exactly in the poor house. In fact whenever I travel to the U.S., it seems third-world in comparison, full of crime, poverty, and pollution. Maybe you want to get out of the dark ages and become an advanced, first-world society?

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444081)

The most stupid, ignorant people on the planet are AGW deniers.

Re:more conspiracy theory nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444521)

Good luck with your bills.

Does anyone oppose this? (4, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443187)

Eliminating market inefficiencies in a way that benefits the environment seems like something everyone could find a reason to support.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (2, Insightful)

tomhath (637240) | about a month ago | (#47443255)

This isn't "market inefficiencies", the market is just fine. This is social engineering by subsidizing one group of products and letting other products pay the price. Attempts along these lines have already had big downsides (e.g. the inordinately high grain prices over the past few years brought on by subsidies to the ethanol industry).

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (4, Interesting)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a month ago | (#47443289)

This is social engineering by subsidizing one group of products and letting other products pay the price.

No it isn't. Protective tariffs are another form of subsidy, and reducing them is a good thing. Plenty of (mostly dumb) subsidies will remain, but this is a step in the right direction.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (2)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443791)

It depends. Sometimes tariffs are NOT effectively subsidies and are used to counteract subsidies in the producing country. But since you acknowledge that these are very related subjects, then I assume we will agree that both tariffs and subsidies for green energy need to be eliminated, or else we're just manipulating the market with slightly different (but possibly equivalent) forces.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (-1, Flamebait)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443339)

It's not clear you understand the difference between a tariff and a subsidy. Are you posting drunk?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

tomhath (637240) | about a month ago | (#47443425)

For starters, please learn what the term "market inefficiency" means, these negotiations have nothing to do with it. Then learn what a "subsidy" is, this is what the governments are (effectively) trying to do - artificially lower the price of a special category of products.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443445)

ok, so you don't understand what a tariff is. Here you go:

A tariff is an artificial tax on importation. It is a market distortion.

Removing a tariff is the natural way things should be. If you want to talk about market distortions, it's that there are still tariffs on other things, sure. But removing tariffs is removing distortions.

You're welcome for clarifying that. You can tip me later.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a month ago | (#47443833)

It's also a market distortion if one locale doesn't regulate pollution and allows businesses to dump waste in communal resources (e.g. rivers), making them externalities. A tariff on imports of such goods can be a way of redressing that balance - manufacturers have to pay the costs irrespective of where they produce the goods if they want to sell them in a particular country.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (0, Troll)

sumdumass (711423) | about a month ago | (#47443925)

You don't and wont get it because you are not thinkibg like a true American liberal progresive.

You see, a premise to most of them is that taxes are an entitlement for others and government programs. Any reduction is a boom for the rich and harm for the poor. If you reduce tariffs only on some products, you are by default relying on taxes from the others for this entitlement. This now becomes a government subsidy in their minds purely because the other products still tariffed do not suffer from the same lack of government interference. So tax breaks are always subsidies because those effected do not pay their fair share.

Forget the logic that lack of involvement means less interference. Even if you support the intended goals. I personally think this is an outstanding way to encourage adoption of these technologies. And i should note that i'm typically called a denyer because i don't buy into the doomsday prophecies and think the problems if ever realized would be better dealt with as technology advances and over the long period of time it will take to have the sort of dooms day problems.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443979)

And i should note that i'm typically called a denyer because i don't buy into the doomsday prophecies and think the problems if ever realized would be better dealt with as technology advances and over the long period of time it will take to have the sort of dooms day problems.

It's somewhat frustrating that anyone who says anything negative about any part of AGW is labeled a denier and shunned.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444547)

Funny cause the person saying that removing the tariff is a subsidy is obviously not a liberal and does not support this attempt at combating climate change. So are you telling the person trying to explain a tariff to them that they aren't thinking liberal enough when you are in-fact arguing the original non-liberal person's point with this purposefully flawed "liberal think".

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

tomhath (637240) | about a month ago | (#47444659)

But removing tariffs is removing distortions.

Yes, exactly my point. Selectively removing distortions by selectively lowering the tax on one product versus another is effectively subsidizing the product. There is no difference between a government removing the tariff on one product versus keeping the tariff but giving the buyer a discount/rebate/credit/subsidy on it; they are all the same.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443807)

Market distortions cause market inefficiencies. Your "gotcha" comment is silly and suggests you are the one who is confused.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a month ago | (#47443877)

It's not clear you understand the difference between a tariff and a subsidy. Are you posting drunk?

There is no effective difference.

You own a mall
You make your money by charging people admission to the mall.
There are 2 stores in the mall.
One sells apples
The other sells oranges
The apple seller charges $2 per apple.
The orange seller charges $1 per orange.
The apple seller has to lower his prices to $1 to attract customers.

After a while the apple seller comes to you and says "I can't make a profit! The Orange guy is stealing all my customers unfairly! It's too cheep to grow oranges!"
You start charging the orange seller a $1 per orange fee to operate in the mall.
The price of Oranges goes up to $2 and shortly thereafter so does the price of Apples.

You've subsidized the Apple sellers with your customers money.
The difference between a direct subsidy and a tariff?
In a subsidy, you collect money from the customer as they enter the mall and give it to the apple store directly. The price at the door increases (taxes) but the price at the register does not.
With a tariff, the price at the door (taxes) will remain the same. But everything at the register goes up. Even things that weren't taxed directly due to lack of competition. The long and short of it is, as far as the customers concerned it's the same thing. They still pay more. It's just a matter of when.

Terrifs and Subsidies are only marginally different. If you believe in managed economies (I don't) then you can use either depending on what you're trying to do. If you really want to hurt the industry in question, then tariffs are the way to go. They hurt that industry directly. If, however, you're just trying to help an ailing industry but don't want to directly hurt the one that's supplanting it, then you can subsidies it. This also gives you the option of getting the taxes from whichever source you really do want to hurt. i.e. Rich poeple, gas and oil, etc...

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47444013)

This is the kind of stuff we're looking at: be informed [slashdot.org] . There's a difference between a subsidy and a tariff.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

volmtech (769154) | about a month ago | (#47444465)

Let's say in 1970 the US had put a tariff on foreign cars. Imports already cost more the domestic cars but by making imports more expensive the moderatly well off would have bought from Detroit because a Ford or Dodge would have been more affordable. If you want to call increased sales a subsidy OK but all those $trillions sent to Japan and now Korea would have done a lot of good in UAW members pockets. Then we have most other American workers subsidized because of HB-1 visas limit the number of tech workers that are allowed in (imported).

Why do most people love cheap (or higher perceived quality) imported goods but balk at having the foreign workers themselves imported.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47444993)

Why do most people love cheap (or higher perceived quality) imported goods but balk at having the foreign workers themselves imported.

Yeah, we're either going to move the factories out, or the workers in. There just aren't enough workers in the US to manufacture everything we want.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (2)

canadian_right (410687) | about a month ago | (#47443357)

Since when have protective tariffs been "efficient"?

Freemarket capitalists should be supporting freetrade no matter what reason the politicians give for getting rid of tariffs. Or are you one of those freemaket people who only think there should be freetrade if the USA benefits?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (3, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a month ago | (#47444311)

Since when have protective tariffs been "efficient"?

If we required accounting of emissions, and not simply of currency units, then there would be no need for tariffs to address the issue of the hidden environmental costs. They can eventually be translated into economic costs, but they also affect quality of life — you can assign economic costs to that as well, but you'll hardly tell the whole story.

When you buy goods made somewhere with inadequate pollution controls, many others have to pay part of your bill. My only problem with the whole idea is that any tariffs should be used specifically for bioremediation, and my prediction is that they largely won't be.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (2)

catchblue22 (1004569) | about a month ago | (#47445429)

This is social engineering by subsidizing one group of products and letting other products pay the price.

Yes. We should stop subsidizing fossil fuels, which currently receive massive subsidies.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443269)

The Jurassic period. O2 in atmosphere was 130% modern levels. CO2 was at 1950ppm, 5-7 times modern levels. The temperature was a whole 3 DEGREES C over modern times! Oh noes! The Jurassic DGW, Dinsaurogenic Global Warming, shows that those Dinosaurs with their Airplanes, SUV, Coal Fire Plants and Cars and stuff, you know, those Dinosaurs and their DGW destroyed THE WHOLE PLANET!! With their DGW! Look, who wants 26% atmospheric oxygen? More air to breathe? Who wants that! And who wants more CO2 @1950 ppm, you know, to make all those plants and trees convert that CO2 into a higher O2! Who wants that! And we DON'T want the massive biodiversity of the Jurassic, no, we don't want more plants and animals and trees, no.

Any time period the warmunists want to "prove" thre is AGW the warmunists just cherry pick ranges. And now I give the warmunists what the need on a silver platter - now they have the perfect example - the Dinosaurs and their horrible DGW ( Disnosauric Global Warming ) that destroyed the Jurassic... Wait, no, it didn't, it was the best time for life on earth with 1950 ppm atmospheric CO2!

Another Cult of the Church of Climatology propaganda piece with High Priest Al Goreleone's nod of approval.

Of Course the Lords of Climatology will make shitloads of money off this scam.

Tsarkon Reports.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443329)

The Jurassic period opposes reducing sanctions? Are you sure?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (2)

canadian_right (410687) | about a month ago | (#47443403)

You are making stuff up. We know the Jurassic was much warmer, being tropical or sub-tropical over most of the world. We think the sea level was much higher. There is no evidence of ice at either pole. Pangaea was starting to break up.

We have no reliable measurements of either O2 or C02 in the Jurassic.

The point you seem to be missing is that the climate change we are experiencing now is happening MUCH faster than any in the past, and we are causing it. Yes, life will go on, but it will disrupt millions of people if we do nothing about it. I'm not sure why so many people think the short term profits of large energy companies are more important than the general welfare of millions of people.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (0)

robsku (1381635) | about a month ago | (#47443681)

Anything goes for the denialists - they even oppose free market capitalism if it threatens their denialist values.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (2, Informative)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443843)

> The point you seem to be missing is that the climate change we are experiencing now is happening MUCH faster than any in the past

Serious question: how could you possibly know this with any reasonable degree of reliability? Even in the last 70 years, our ability to measure global average temperatures has become orders of magnitude more precise, let alone O2 and CO2 levels. There is no way to determine whether tangential methods of measurement, like ice cores and tree rings, are accurate.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (0)

Kernel Kurtz (182424) | about a month ago | (#47445573)

Especially when you pick which tree rings give you the answer you want, and then graft modern data on to it (cough).

And for our ability to measure becoming more precise, I guess that is why they change their methodology regularly (ie HADCRUT2, 3, 4....). We all know good scientists constantly change how they measure things, for consistency. And of course they continually "correct" decades old data as required as well. And if you delete the original data all the better. No going back LOL.

And I work in IT, I know a bit about modelling and algorithms, and though that is far from my expertise, I have to say their ability to model climate is pretty dismal. ALL the models overestimate over the last decades. You would expect in a good ensemble for some to be high and some to be low and reality to be somewhere in between, but they are ALL high. Oh Noes, we're gonna die!!! And it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out why. Models assume as their raison de etre it is all about CO2. Climate is not all about CO2, it's way more complex than that.

I like science as much as anyone, and even ignoring the problems with falsifiability or reproducibility in climate science, few other branches of scientific inquiry leave me as underwhelmed with their predictive ability. If you want to know what it will be like in a century, you have to have some idea of what happens in between. In high school they called it showing your work.

So far it's a fail.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47445595)

Serious question: If energy independence allows us to stop meddling in places like the middle east and have cleaner air, does it really matter if the whole global warning thing isn't actually correct?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443871)

"general welfare"

he problem, as Madison saw it, was that President Washington had fallen under the sway of Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, who interpreted the âoegeneral welfareâ clause of the Constitution to mean that Congress could undertake a wide range of activities that the Constitution did not delegate to it. That way lay disaster, in Madisonâ(TM)s view. âoeIf Congress can apply money indefinitely to the general welfare and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare,â he declared on the floor of the House, there was no end to what the central government could doâ"from taking control of religion to taking âoeinto their own hands the education of children.â

Every time you and your fucking governments come to help, I have more tax, less liberty and the pollution still continues. Its just that your companies with your lobbyists grease the right palms to pollute while you pretend to be green.

Take your Agenda 21 and your world-wide police state and FOAD you lowly little fucking puke.

Molon labe.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (1)

camg188 (932324) | about a month ago | (#47444879)

climate change we are experiencing now is happening MUCH faster than any in the past

citation?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (0)

robsku (1381635) | about a month ago | (#47443665)

Your support for keeping the tariff's has been noted, but still:

http://www.skepticalscience.co... [skepticalscience.com]

Your deniarwulist myth is busted.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443847)

Yes yes. Another article that takes the same numbers I use to prove you're wrong and you add magic pixie dust to prove Im wrong. You are full of fucking shit.

The earth has been a snowball and no-ice before with no humans on it, you fucking cunt shithead.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a month ago | (#47443853)

The Jurassic period. O2 in atmosphere was 130% modern levels

And all of the species that were dominant during the Triassic period did really well throughout the Jurassic...

Re:Does anyone oppose this? tsarkon reports (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a month ago | (#47443949)

The Jurassic period. O2 in atmosphere was 130% modern levels. CO2 was at 1950ppm, 5-7 times modern levels. The temperature was a whole 3 DEGREES C over modern times! Oh noes!

And the continents were of completely different shape, and the solar constant was something like 2 % lower, which corresponds to an equilibrium temperature 1.5K lower. (I don't even remember the orbital parameters of Earth at that time, ditto for the axial tilt.) So it's not like the things you're mentioned are the only variables.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1, Troll)

ganjadude (952775) | about a month ago | (#47443521)

agreed, I dont buy into the AGW religion but i am happy to buy things that are cleaner for the world when I can afford them. Making solar panels and other green tech cheaper is always good by anyones standards.

The only people I would think would be against this is the governments collecting the tarriffs

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443863)

> Making solar panels and other green tech cheaper is always good by anyones standards.

In a vacuum? With no other effects? In what scenario would that ever happen?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about a month ago | (#47444439)

well eliminating tarriffs is a good first start, that would drop the cost up to 35% for some people, thats not chump change

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47444603)

that is not the only effect. the other effect is that US producers will go out of business, because China is subsidizing the production of their PVs and windmills. the tariffs bring the cost of China's products closer to market price. if you take away the tariffs, you need to simultaneously remove the subsidies. yes, that includes the US's green energy subsidies as well.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444437)

what idiot would call this a troll??

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443711)

I oppose this. The last thing we need is more trade with second-world countries.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443779)

So, you support eliminating all government subsidies for green energy too, right?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443839)

So, you support eliminating all government subsidies for green energy too, right?

Well now, that's a completely different topic. There are plenty of people who oppose that.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47444169)

No, that's exactly the point. It is not a completely different topic. Many tariffs are used by countries to counteract subsidies in the producing company. That is why we (the US) impose a tariff on Chinese PVs. China heavily subsidizes PV manufacturing. And if you just eliminate the tariff without handling the subsidy, then the problem gets worse, not better.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47444199)

Apparently you are not one of the people who oppose eliminating government subsidies for green energy.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443893)

Eliminating market inefficiencies in a way that benefits the environment seems like something everyone could find a reason to support.

I'll expect a lot of stonewalling and heel dragging from the US Government. The Obama regime, like the Bush Administrations before it (I don't remember where Clinton stood) have always favored fossil fuels. I know the Supreme Court would disagree, but I'll bet this has something to do with the billions of dollars in bribes (I mean campaign contributions, of course) pumped into candidates coffers in order to PREVENT just what this agreement is supposed to accomplish. And guess what, as long as the bribe money keeps flowing the US Government (no matter who is currently in power) is not going to care about the environment. http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/13/11/22/1716216/a-war-over-solar-power-is-raging-within-the-gop In 2012, the Obama regime put a 250% protectionist tariff on imported solar technology in order to hurt the US renewable energy industry. http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/12/05/18/1246226/us-imposes-tariffs-on-chinese-solar-cells There have been too many articles to quote recently about paranoid fossil fuel power based companies demanding fees from people who put up solar power on their house and still want to connect to the power grid for "off days". http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/13/11/16/1422227/arizona-approves-grid-connection-fees-for-solar-rooftops Not to mention the "1%" scumbags that want to destroy renewable resources for the own greedy purposes. http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/14/04/28/0347225/the-koch-brothers-attack-on-solar-energy.

So to answer your question above, the rich and powerful that actually runs this country have everything to lose by supporting any kind of renewable energy source and I fully expect the US Government to do everything in their power to sabotage these proceedings.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

pitchpipe (708843) | about a month ago | (#47444009)

Does anyone oppose this?

You must be new here.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a month ago | (#47444171)

Eliminating market inefficiencies in a way that benefits the environment seems like something everyone could find a reason to support. Reply to This Share

Except that these aren't "market inefficiencies".

Tariffs exist for real reasons. For example: the solar industry in China is heavily government-subsidized. So by removing any tariffs, the government would allow them to compete on the "free" market (which really isn't) against other companies in the U.S. and Europe that aren't so heavily subsidized.

When government is subsidizing your industry, it's isn't a real "market". And therefore this does not represent "market inefficiencies".

Make no mistake: there is no "free trade" in this "free trade" agreement. It amounts to pouring buckets of money into China that could go to otherwise profitable companies elsewhere.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47444201)

Write a letter to Obama.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a month ago | (#47444215)

Have done so. Many times. If not to him personally, then to his cronies in Congress.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47444251)

Way to be a participatory citizen.

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

hey! (33014) | about a month ago | (#47444621)

I dunno. Has Obama come out in favor of it yet?

Re:Does anyone oppose this? (1)

camg188 (932324) | about a month ago | (#47444803)

I think that it's great, but to think that this will significantly impact any climate change is foolishness.

Climate Change and Free Trade (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443205)

Tool elitist scams that go together like chocolate and peanut butter. It was only a matter of time. The 1% will eat this peanut butter cup, while the rest of us get laid off yet again "for the benefit of humanity".

Re:Climate Change and Free Trade (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about a month ago | (#47443733)

That's the most bizarre mix of conspiracy theory and politics that I've seen in a long time. That's saying something.

Climate Change Cult (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443235)

The climate was over 5 degree hotter 3100 years ago, and there wasn't runaway greenhouse gas effects from methane deposits.

Climate change is inevitable. Only plebs believe that by paying more taxes to enrich the political elite that it can be stopped. It can't be stopped. Deal with it. Don't drag me along into your global slave trade by making me pay taxes for useless carbon credits.

Re:Climate Change Cult (1, Insightful)

mab (17941) | about a month ago | (#47443275)

Dickhead

Re:Climate Change Cult (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443287)

The Jurassic period. O2 in atmosphere was 130% modern levels. CO2 was at 1950ppm, 5-7 times modern levels. The temperature was a whole 3 DEGREES C over modern times! Oh noes! The Jurassic DGW, Dinsaurogenic Global Warming, shows that those Dinosaurs with their Airplanes, SUV, Coal Fire Plants and Cars and stuff, you know, those Dinosaurs and their DGW destroyed THE WHOLE PLANET!! With their DGW! Look, who wants 26% atmospheric oxygen? More air to breathe? Who wants that! And who wants more CO2 @1950 ppm, you know, to make all those plants and trees convert that CO2 into a higher O2! Who wants that! And we DON'T want the massive biodiversity of the Jurassic, no, we don't want more plants and animals and trees, no.

Any time period the warmunists want to "prove" thre is AGW the warmunists just cherry pick ranges. And now I give the warmunists what the need on a silver platter - now they have the perfect example - the Dinosaurs and their horrible DGW ( Disnosauric Global Warming ) that destroyed the Jurassic... Wait, no, it didn't, it was the best time for life on earth with 1950 ppm atmospheric CO2!

Another Cult of the Church of Climatology propaganda piece with High Priest Al Goreleone's nod of approval.

Of Course the Lords of Climatology will make shitloads of money off this scam.

You are the fucking dickhead you commie bootlicking yellow brownshirt fucking puke.

Warm is Cold. Freedom is Slavery. War is Peace. Ignorance is Strength.

Re:Climate Change Cult (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443301)

Warm is Cold. Freedom is Slavery. War is Peace. Ignorance is Strength.

Re:Climate Change Cult (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443501)

Wow, what a comeback.

China (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443327)

China already have 25 year contracts with national coal burning power stations that states that no filters are allowed to be installed.
Installing filters costs nothing (a couple of millions per station) so that's not the reason. Who knows what they're thinking, the only sure thing is that nothing will change the next two decades.

Re:China (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a month ago | (#47443423)

The words you are looking for are 'electrostatic precipitators'.

They're not perfect but 99% better than nothing. Last I heard there were still many old coal plants in the USA grandfathered so they don't need them. They should finally be getting retired or retrofitted real soon now.

Always thought an emission allowance certificate would be a good gift for a greeny. They could frame it and act even smugger, knowing that, for example, 100 tons of SO2 would not be emitted and dirty old plants retired sooner.

I'd be selling them on Ebay today, but couldn't find an original to copy.

I don't get the point of the negotiation (1)

khallow (566160) | about a month ago | (#47443383)

It appears that a country has to be more or less third world [oecd.org] (2001-2002 data for the most part) in order to have 35% tariff rates (under the WTO scheme). Most of the countries in the current negotiation already have tariff rates near or under 5% including the US, the EU, Australia, Japan, and probably South Korea and Switzerland. In the link above, China had tariffs a bit over 5% on most goods aside from a few entries (it may be better now since the report is ten years old). The worst at 40% was ethanol (good "220710" in the "Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System" [macmap.org] ). Looks like China has 35% tariffs on water heaters too (841911 and 841919) and 30% on mufflers and exhaust pipes (870892).

At a glance, I'd say the countries with the highest tariffs are probably Costa Rica and China. But maybe there's some high tariffs between individual members of the group in addition to the above list.

Chinese corner the market (1)

russotto (537200) | about a month ago | (#47443433)

with stuff that's crappy but incredibly cheap in 3...2...1...

Gross or net? (2)

overshoot (39700) | about a month ago | (#47443465)

The United States exported about $106 billion worth of such goods last year.

It's one thing to export $106 billion more than you import and quite another to export $106 billion while importing $250 billion.

A good rule of thumb is that if an article doesn't explicitly tell you that it's a net export, it's because it's a puff piece with a bias and the truth would harsh the whole slant.

Re:Gross or net? (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about a month ago | (#47443603)

citation? not a complaint im actually interested in the difference here

Re:Gross or net? (1)

overshoot (39700) | about a month ago | (#47444093)

No source -- more of a complaint on TFA. The difference between gross exports and net exports is definitional, so I would hope no source required.

Re:Gross or net? (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about a month ago | (#47444445)

ok, i was not sure if that 250 mil number was correct or not, id like to find out what the actual difference is

Get rid of them all (4, Informative)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a month ago | (#47443473)

If people really care about global warming and economic activity, they should read the latest IPCC report. It says that the best way to avoid warming is economic development. If the economy freezes in place (something a high carbon tax could do) then the warming will be about 4C by the end of the century. If the economy in all the "third world" countries develops into something like first-world conditions by the continued march of progress, then the warming will be closer to 1C.

Anything that stands in the way of that development is going to contribute to the warming. Removing these tariffs is a good thing, but to get maximum environmental benefit they need to get rid of the rest.

I know, Overton's Window and all.

Re:Get rid of them all (2)

russotto (537200) | about a month ago | (#47443515)

Wait, the gospel has changed from the old story about the horrible Westerners using 99% of the resources and producing 150% of the pollution by oppressing the poverty-stricken but frugal and in-tune with nature third-worlders? When did this happen?

Re:Get rid of them all (1)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47444021)

There is a small shelf of this debate that is actually based on logic and facts. But the vast majority of the debate is full of nonsense like that to which you allude. So, unless you are specifically referring to the IPCC as "gospel", then it hasn't changed.

Re:Get rid of them all (1)

Calavar (1587721) | about a month ago | (#47445165)

The gospel has changed because the world has changed. In the 70s and 80s, India, China, Indonesia, Thailand, etc. had only a fraction of the industry that they do now, so they were responsible for much less pollution. Back then the US was the worlds biggest polluter, followed by most of Western Europe. Over the past 30 years, things changed. This has very little to do with media bias.

Clintons Hijacking the Gore Cash Cow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47443559)

Cool!

The Clinton new world order group is beginning to leverage the Gore build a cap and trade market and make us millionaires cash cow.

Can't wait to see how it ends, but I'm sure the 98% be on the losing end again.

Re:Clintons Hijacking the Gore Cash Cow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444693)

Clintons? They have nothing to do with this. Give up on HIllary, she's tainted and unelectable.

What! A reasonable plan for CO2 reduction!?!?! (2)

felrom (2923513) | about a month ago | (#47443595)

Actions like this are how you get the other half to agree to do things to reduce CO2 emissions.

Good step: Offer to eliminate tariffs on solar panels and other things.
Bad step: Call anyone who so much as questions ANYTHING a denier.
Good step: Get behind building LOTS of modern nuclear plants. LOTS.
Bad step: Say that anyone who so much as questions ANYTHING should be arrested. https://theconversation.com/is... [theconversation.com]
Good step: Get behind building LOTS of electric cars, and the technology to increase batteries' energy density.
Bad step: Say that anyone who so much as questions ANYTHING should be killed. http://www.americanthinker.com... [americanthinker.com]

Much of the political opposition that the Global Warming people get is because they believe that all of their solutions are so good that they should be mandatory. They come to you and say that you'll have to give up your money, your freedom, your independence, and your quality of life. This is all demanded at the barrel of a gun with the implication that if you don't capitulate, you'll also have to give up your life itself.

Environmentalists have made many great missteps, the two largest being not loudly denouncing those among them that call for murder of anyone who dissents, and continuously pushing plans that they know half the population will never get behind.

You want to reduce CO2 emissions? Suggest plans for it that everyone can support. Leave the death threats at home. ; )

Re:What! A reasonable plan for alien invasion!?!?! (2, Insightful)

TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) | about a month ago | (#47444181)

Good step: Offer to eliminate tariffs on solar panels and other things.
Good step: Get behind building LOTS of modern nuclear plants. LOTS.
Good step: Get behind building LOTS of electric cars, and the technology to increase batteries' energy density.

Three great steps!

As to "and other things..." I have always favored a move in the direction of free trade in all things, as Jefferson (not Hamilton) intended. In modern context this involves rolling back tariffs altogether, including ones for which a reciprocal arrangement exists, with the objective of simplifying things in general, and Federal law in particular. Henry George's 1886 treatise Protection or Free Trade [mises.org] remains as relevant and thought-provoking as ever. I agree with other posters who have said that tariffs are a market distortion -- and would add that selective tariffs by technology category (within the classification of power generation) are an even more awful distortion. You're taking the rudder from market forces -- which reflect a combination of necessity and desire -- and placing it into the hands of those who get to decide what is save-de-planet environmental and what is not.

I consider the present worldwide system of tariffs a form of pollution and wasted energy. I believe the only sustainable form of wealth creation is meaningful innovation, not the borderline kind that results from some tech firm beating another to the patent office. I mean something new that can reduce the cost of living by reducing expenses. My chosen (workable) path is to reduce the cost of grid electricity delivered (and remaining hydrocarbons extracted) in North America by harnessing Thorium.

And it so happens that NOT ONE of those politically correct green solutions generates the base load energy necessary to survive a harsh Winter, let alone grow. It really has been two decades of bad road. "Cheaper" Chinese solar panels or wind turbines will not keep us all alive during a continent-wide hard freeze. Until the "Green" parties [youtube.com] of the world agree on a some method of generating an incredible amount of energy 24x7 reliably, something that will work, we're screwed.

Suggest plans for it that everyone can support. Leave the death threats at home. ; )

Okay. Remember in all of this... NO PRESSURE! [youtube.com]

It's fun to discuss nuclear energy on Slashdot [slashdot.org] ... sometimes you just have to point things out point by point [slashdot.org] ... some confuse Weinberg's '300 year best-fit for waste' two fluid design for other single fluid designs [slashdot.org] ... or using solid fuel Thorium, which is pointless so long as uranium is available [slashdot.org] ... yes it's full of dangerous glop, but it is useful and happy glop [slashdot.org] ... yes, I think a LFTR could be developed and built within $4B [slashdot.org] ... every path to biofuels leads to scorched-earth disaster, Thorium energy gives us the surplus to generate synfuels [slashdot.org] ... a move to LFTR may be the only way to preserve modern society in the face of disaster (volcanism, Maunder minimum) [slashdot.org] ... utility-scale so-called 'renewables' non-solutions have a gazillion points of failure, gigawatt LFTR plants few, and it is my belief they will save NOT fail us [slashdot.org] ... aside from your own yard or roof, solar and wind are losers [slashdot.org] ... with LFTR surplus we could begin making diesel and fertilizer [slashdot.org] ... do it for the children [slashdot.org] ... and you my friend -- you would look especially good in space [slashdot.org] ... an Admiral Rickover fact check (severe tire damage) [slashdot.org] ... LNT (linear no threshhold) needs re-examination [slashdot.org] ... no I'm not risk adverse, just risk conscious [slashdot.org] ... one must sift past the fear-hype, especially regards Fukushima [slashdot.org] ... a look at Electricity in the Time of Cholera [slashdot.org] ... on the new coal powered IBM Power8 chips [slashdot.org] ... Thorium lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun, beating its legs trying to turn itself over, but it can't. Not without your help. [slashdot.org]

Think of me as the Trix Rabbit of Thorium.

___
Please see Thorium Remix [youtube.com] and my own letters on energy,
  To The Honorable James M. Inhofe, United States Senate [scribd.com]
  To whom it may concern, Halliburton Corporate [scribd.com]
Also of interest, Faulkner [2005]: Electric Pipelines for North American Power Grid Efficiency Security [scribd.com]

Re:What! A reasonable plan for alien invasion!?!?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444717)

Wind and solar are like a bad joke. I feel like I'm living in the damn twilight zone every time I hear from people who want to save the world at the same time they oppose nuclear power.

There is no "energy crisis". Just a stupidity crisis.

Re:What! A reasonable plan for alien invasion!?!?! (1)

TheRealHocusLocus (2319802) | about a month ago | (#47444941)

Okay. Remember in all of this... NO PRESSURE! [youtube.com]

OOPS... a link to a youtube-censored video. Try this one: NO PRESSURE! [vimeo.com]
Bad taste should never be flagged 'inappropriate' for kids of any age.
How else would they learn what it is?

What about subsidies? (3, Informative)

mattwarden (699984) | about a month ago | (#47443773)

The US uses tariffs to offset subsidies by China, for example, on PV panels. If you agree to eliminate the tariffs without addressing the subsidies, then it doesn't solve the problem, and it certainly doesn't "increase American exports" as the summary suggests. Of course, you'd have to eliminate the US's green subsidies, too.

I'm sure you're all in favor of that, right?

Tariffs were implements to stop dumping. (2)

a1englishman (209505) | about a month ago | (#47443917)

The US government applied tariffs to Chinese solar panels because the Chinese were dumping them in the US market. If they can agree to see their product in our market for a fair price, sure we can climate the tariffs; otherwise, forget it cause we're not killing our on shore manufacturing and watching the prices skyrocket.

http://rt.com/business/163552-... [rt.com]

and what about currency shenanigans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444029)

Who's to say what a "fair price" is, if one side quotes in yuan and the other in dollars.

Re:Tariffs were implements to stop dumping. (2)

BradMajors (995624) | about a month ago | (#47444235)

China is subsidizing the production of solar panels. Meanwhile, the United States is subsidizing the consumption of solar panels.

meanwhile... (1)

BradMajors (995624) | about a month ago | (#47444055)

The United States Imposes Steep Tariffs on Importers of Chinese Solar Panels

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06... [nytimes.com]

Dream on and this is incorrect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444075)

This is another BS story. Just search the net and you'll see that the U.S. and others have charged China with dumping solar panels below cost. The U.S. and others can't compete with China on producing solar panels and this will not help U.S. exports of solar panels as the article claims.

Slashdot? No, Crapdot.

" help increase American exports" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month ago | (#47444279)

Hahah the fallacy here is that we don't make any of those these here, and even if we did, they would too expensive in just about any other country, and certainly any developing country.

What doesn fighting climate change mean? (1)

amightywind (691887) | about a month ago | (#47445193)

What does 'fighting climate change' mean? Do they want warmer or colder global temperatures? How do these governments hope to manipulate climate by granting favors to their cronies?

Wag the Dog (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about a month ago | (#47445335)

So, the US Government is trying to capitalize politically on its effort to "save the environment" by removing tariffs it only imposed on Chinese solar panels LAST MONTH?

I see what they did, there.

Increase goods movements (0)

manu0601 (2221348) | about a month ago | (#47446019)

Increasing goods movement seems counterproductive if this is about fighting CO2 emissions.
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