Renewable energy technologies eg.new sunlight = no C tax
Non-renewable fossil C fuel = 'Ancient sunlight tax', at the main source of C pollution (for easy accounting). I'm predicting the 'No' vote result in the recent Oz Referendum will accelerate fossil fuel expansion if Clive Palmer, a coal man, is any indication after he made a 2 million dollar donation to the 'No-alition' kitty.
According to the UN, fossil fuels account 'for over 75 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions and nearly 90 per cent of all carbon dioxide emissions'.
I'm thinking start with coal (why limit it to just metallurgical coal?) and if effective, move to natural gas. Crude oil and refined products could be excluded since petrol and diesel prices are increasing (and will only further increase if the Gaza conflict becomes regional) and are a strong driver of inflation and cost of living which the Gov and RBA is trying to control and decrease.
The 'Ancient Sunlight tax' could be spent on new Industrial Ecologies (discussed in the last blog) with sustainable (hemp based) housing eg.'Tiny houses' and 'Ecovillages' and manufacturing of renewable energy machinery (and C negative technologies (CNT) produced from the machinery) for home (the houses) and abroad, accelerated with 'manufacturing credits' for CNT using a Gov design registry and a Webapp for manufacturing businesses with Measurement, Verification, Reporting and payment. These credits could possibly be linked in to the Offset credits in the Climate Safeguard Mechanism (CSM) or possibly standalone with funding from the CEFC or other Gov funding source. For eg., the credits could pay for some 'Green' 3mm HW350 weathering steel (eg. At Whyalla steelworks, using locally produced and value-added 'Green Hydrogen' for reduction of high grade Magnetite iron ore) for Kon-Tiki biochar kilns in Australia (though I am a little bit biased since I'm selling them).
The 'manufacturing credits' for CNT model could be adopted, if successful, by other countries. If an international 'Not-for-profit' (NFP)/other Gov's could subsidise CNT 'manufacturing credits' around the world, South Australian steel businesses/alliances could export affordable high quality 'Green steel' to manufacturers with limited or no access to high quality 'Green steel' at all scales of CNT manufacturing. I believe 'Green steel' has a promising future for a recarbonised world economy but the mining, processing, production and logistics with it's ultimate C footprint need to be factored in. Iron ore reduction with 'Green Hydrogen' is just one step in a Life Cycle Analysis (LCA).
Raw hemp and hemp bio-composites could be used for housing (prefabbed wall panels, flooring, insulation and 'strong as steel' structural components, according to Brett Boag, Hemp Innovator and Founder of Hexcore Hemp Processing in Victoria) without using much, if any, steel, but would need to become a ginormous industry to compete with 'Green steel' exoskeletons in building structures but once again an LCA of hemp products for steel replacement would be needed for comparison. Plus it can do all the other applications just mentioned. A water usage comparison would be useful too eg.mining of iron ore using precious groundwater (or possibly desalinated seawater) V growing of hemp plants (which in many areas may not need irrigation). A higher level use case of steel could arguably be for CNTs if hemp is the more sustainable option for steel replacement in construction, given that hemp is a fast growing crop to sequester C (approximately 100 days from planting to harvesting) and could be grown regeneratively (as opposed to extractive mining of iron ore) with hemp biochar (produced with 'Green steel' based biochar kilns (CNTs)). But - it's also a question of time eg. How long would it take to establish a ginormous hemp industry for the housing plan? Maybe steel could be used initially for exoskeletons until hemp could replace it - plus, hemp has the added advantage of not being limited to a specific area eg. Whyalla, if the right strain can be found for a given location (eg.soil, rainfall, climate, heatwaves etc.) so could be grown, processed and value-added near many if not most future housing developments/Industrial Ecologies for a smaller logistics C footprint. There's also the question of existing infrastructure V the cost of establishing new infrastructure. Ultimately, both 'Green steel' and hemp would tap into existing infrastructure and require new infrastructure that would create jobs. Both industries will probably have a role to play in the future of housing in Australia but there's nothing better than a tech nerd-off. But - let's get back to the C tax...
In addition to the proposed 'Ancient sunlight tax', here's a wish list:
- stronger land rights and Cultural recognition for Indigenous/Traditional landowners eg.rights to veto fossil projects
- minimal water extraction and pollution of the Sacred future water supply in mining operations
- Zero emissions mining operations (which is independent of the product eg. coal and unnatural methane, producing loads of C emissions when combusted - which kinda takes the piss out of the idea)
-Australian Carbon Removal Credit Units (ACRCUs) (as opposed to ineffective ACCUs)
- moratorium on new and expanded fossil C projects (I call it the 'Ancient sunlight lever')
- divestment of fossil C projects (up to the shareholders of fossil companies)
- C export tax (alternative to the 'Ancient sunlight tax')
- C import taxes in Oz and overseas (which seem to be on the rise eg.EU)
Green materials acquisition, machinery/tools and manufacturing of CNTs is only half the problem. As with the Carbon Removal Marketplace (CRM) options: C source, C in supply chains, C at the destination/sink, the source of C is the easiest way to account for it. Users of the CNT to remove C is the other half of the problem and can also get paid too - from a CRM such as puro.earth or 'Carbon4Good' (being trialled in Kenya. Also, I'd love to get some 'Green' 3mm HW350 over there), in the case of the Kon-Tiki biochar kilns and get paid again if value-adding or selling the biochar.
I predict the fossil companies producing C products resulting in C pollution are creating the economic and ecological conditions for their own business case failure with eventual replacement of their C products with climate-adapted CNTs over time. Fossil-free Civilisation is already rebuilding the Planet but can't happen fast enough given the urgency of the Climate Emergency. Stronger Gov intervention, possibly with an 'Ancient sunlight tax', could accelerate this change. 😀
Some tech worth researching:
- Q5 for electrical and Q2.4 for thermal aka self-powered 24/7 with 'infinite' energy output via water fusion from water in the air/atmosphere (Atmospheric Water Harvesting eg.hydrogels with functionalised Carbon nanoparticles) or directly from water from another source. Maybe the thermal energy could be tapped with a heat exchanger linked to a thermoacoustic Stirling engine for additional electrical output.
-one for the Aussie work and play lifestyle or even 'Tiny houses'
-Atmospheric Water Harvesting (AWH) with modular panels for water insecure areas eg.Water quantity V quality, human population V per capita consumption, fracking sites ('Water trigger'), accelerated glacier melting above river basins, climates with low Relative Humidity such as expanding semi-arid and arid climate zones due to climate change, the 'Green Revolution' agricultural model polluting groundwater, river basins and oceans et al.