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Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999



Item #d90nov66

Global environmental research in Japan will receive increased emphasis in the 1991 budget submitted by its Science and Technology Agency and the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Work to be supported includes developing CFC substitutes, improving prediction of global warming, launching a new ozone observation satellite, and studying the role of the oceans in climatic change. In addition, the Environment Agency has opened a new Center for Global Environmental Research at Tsukuba Science City. (See Nature, p. 783, Aug. 30, 1990; New Scientist, p. 18, Oct. 6.)

Item #d90nov67

The Center for International Climate Policy Research was established at the University of Oslo following the Bergen conference on sustainable development, May 1990. Funded by the Norwegian government and the private sector, it will evaluate international legal agreements on climate, cost-effectiveness and social impacts of response measures, and approaches to technology transfer or financial assistance. The address is POB 1066, Blindern, N-016 Oslo 3, Norway.

Carbon Taxes

Item #d90nov68

"Taxation or Regulation?" P. Aldhous, Nature, p. 412, Oct. 4, 1990. In the U.S. and Europe, opinions seem to be diverging on whether taxation (market forces) or regulation is the best approach for limiting emissions of greenhouse gases, with European viewpoints placing more emphasis on regulation. This brief article discusses recent policy and research developments relating to the U.S., the Netherlands and the U.K.

Item #d90nov69

"Europe's Ministers Fail to Agree on Framework for Green Taxes," D. MacKenzie, New Scientist, p. 17, Sep. 29, 1990. Twelve environment ministers of European Community countries meeting in Rome agreed that market forces should be used for environmental goals, but disagreed on what those goals should be. However, the European Commission itself restated its position favoring substantial, phased increases in energy prices to counteract greenhouse emissions. According to Intl. Environ. Rptr. (p. 385, Sep. 26), West Germany's Environment Minister Klaus Töpfer proposed in Rome that carbon dioxide emissions be taxed in his country at a rate of DM10 (about US$6.40) per ton.

Item #d90nov70

"[Japan's] Finance Ministry Announces Plans to Establish Environment Tax," ibid., p. 361, Sep. 1990. New taxes will be levied in 1992 on all stages of trade in fossil fuel products, from production to consumption, to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

Item #d90nov71

"Pentagon Switches Funds to Environment Research," D. Charles, New Scientist, p. 23, Sep. 22, 1990. A U.S. Defense Department budget proposal contains $200 million for a Strategic Environmental Defense Program and was considered likely to pass. It would fund environmental sensors on ships and submarines, time on military computers for global modeling, and research on alternative energy sources. Civilian scientists would be allowed access to currently classified global environmental data collected by the military.

Item #d90nov72

"Leaking Gas Mains Help to Warm the Globe," D. MacKenzie, ibid., p. 24. A report commissioned by the environmental group Greenpeace concludes that natural gas leakage in Britain may contribute more to global warming than burning the gas does. Also discussed is the position of British Gas on the issue, and implications for changes being considered for European Community fuel tax policy.

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