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No to Kyoto Treaty

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No to Kyoto Treaty

Lewis Letter in USA Today

<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />USA TODAY's editorial fails to make an economic case for U.S. ratification of the Kyoto Protocol (“Global warming shift gets cold shoulder,” Our view, Greenhouse gas emissions debate, Oct. 21). <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

It argues that, unlike businesses in Kyoto-ratifying countries, U.S.-based plants “risk being left behind in adopting new technologies that not only cut emissions but also boost efficiency and lower business costs.”

Not so. In a global marketplace, U.S. firms will adopt whatever technologies “boost efficiency and lower business costs,” whether the USA ratifies Kyoto or not. Besides, the editorial seems to confuse energy efficiency with economic efficiency. Kyoto's emission caps are a stealth energy tax, and energy taxes raise firms' production costs, not lower them.

Finally, Kyoto's emission-trading scheme is not a new feature that somehow renders obsolete President Bush's reasons for rejecting Kyoto in 2001. Kyoto has emphasized emissions trading since its inception in December 1997.

Kyoto was and remains an expensive, non-solution to an unproven problem.

Marlo Lewis

Senior fellow

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Washington