The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

Cap and trade is a far more desirable alternative to fighting pollution that a carbon tax.

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Debate Round Forfeited
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/26/2019 Category: Economics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 266 times Debate No: 121017
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
Votes (0)




Carbon taxes are not as effective as a cap and trade. This is because when a good is in high demand, The producers know that there will always be buyers for the commodity, So they always have the incentive to keep producing, Even if it means bearing the cost of the carbon tax. So in this case, There is no such guarantee of less pollution, Only benefit being that it is a lot of revenue for the government. Meanwhile, A cap and trade system puts a limit on the pollution directly. A firm that chooses to pollute needs to purchase a permit, Which allows for a limited amount of pollution. The government only keeps a few of these permits circulation and allows for trading of these permits between firms. This way, No firm is legally allowed to pollute in excess of what is permitted under the permit.


If you want people to drink less you tax drink
if you want people to smoke less you tax smoking
If you want there to be less rich people you tax them to death
tax something and you disincentivise it
and we should tax consumption the more we consume them more we polluteand we should tax rich people to death they are the ones wasting and cosuming the most
if you want people to invent clean energy you give them a tax credit. . The better the invention the less tax they pay
Debate Round No. 1


Okay, So your point is that whenever you have something undesirable in the economy, Taxing is the best alternative. I do not think this is true for most of the examples you have listed, But let's not deviate. In this round, I will be solely explaining why taxes are inferior to a simple Cap and Trade. So why does taxing not work in most countries?

1. )Possibility of evasion
Ever heard of "Pollution Havens"?
When a country imposes high amounts of tax on emissions, The firms try to cheat the system and shift production to other countries, Where the tax is low or almost nil. The big companies are able to easily bypass the tax process by moving their production to another country.

2. )Inefficiency
Like I have addressed in the first round(to which there as no rebuttal), Setting up a Carbon tax is hard. Setting it too low, And it affects no one. Still at the same level of pollution. Setting it too high, And the final goods become way too expensive(incidence of tax shared by both consumer and producer). Suddenly, No one wants to buy your good. But at the same time, You're incurring a lot of production costs. So you decide to shut down production. What does that mean? Loss of jobs(and mind you the industries that tend to give off lots of pollution are also heavy employers), Income, And economic variables in the economy, Thus shifting against economic growth. Hence, Deciding the right amount is hard. And the rate of tax in most countries(currently) is unable to help reach the desired levels. Not to mention the cost which the government has to bear to administer these taxes.

I will be making more substantives in the next round. Please do attempt to refute these points.
Thank you.
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by lilianacorona 3 years ago
I think that, Also is very important think about reduce the CO2, The tax could be investment in new tecnology for reduce CO2.
Good Luck!
Posted by omar2345 3 years ago
Pro needs to more time to improve his point.
My advice in future debates is use paragraphs and define keywords.
Con is dumb as ever. You have been on this site for 1 year and for the latest 4 months of it I have yet to see you debate well.
Pro you got this.
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