If everything in this world rested on me, I will make sure that the world will be a greener place to live in. All of my policies will be based on three of the Green Four Pillars – okologisch (ecological sound), sozial (social stability) and basisdemokratisch (democratic society).
The economy will not be based simply on capitalism. There are more to life than just capitals. Though free trade is important, certain things will be given some leeway, of such as subsidies so important industries to the green ideology may flourish for the benefit of the whole. Taxes and tariffs will still play an important role in a laissez faire market.
The most important thing that will be made compulsory is the pollution market. Each firm will have its own amount of pollution allowed to be produced. Of course, the amount of pollution it is entitled to will vary according to its size and sector. In this way, the firm will be allowed to do whatever it wants with the permit as long as the activity is within the boundary of the law. Furthermore, the firm will need to pay for each extra ton of pollution it makes as a fine. The amount fine will be large enough as to offset the violating firm profit. In this, it is hoped that the fine will be a sufficient deterrent without hurting the industry greatly.
The only way to produce more products is to obtain pollution permit first. However, it cannot obtain such permit directly from the government but rather, it needs to buy the extra privilege from other firm that uses only partially of their share. Despite this, the government still has the ability to issue such permit as it deems necessary for a sustainable economic growth of a particular sector and not of a particular firm. It is important to state that the permit transaction between firms will still be needed to be approved by the government. In a way, this is similar to the coupon system when in the market, both monetary and coupon units are used for transaction activities. Through this, carbon based economy or rather green economy will be born.
The government on the other hand distributes the permits that in turn given by a world body that regulates the permit circulation internationally. Each country will receive a particular amount of permit after that particular country’s industry, population, resources and area size are considered. A world body, perhaps a neo-WTO will be given the power to make sure that the carbon trading will run smoothly on the international level.
Reward and punishment philosophy will be upheld in order to convince countries to accept this economy. Economic sanction will be imposed on countries that commit serious environmental breach. Most common sanction will be the withdrawal of pollution permits. The heaviest penalty would be an economic isolation on all sorts of goods save essential such as food and medicine. However, environmental violation does not include environmental accidents though inaction may lead to moderate punishment. Through this, it is hoped that pollution problem will be reduced significantly.
Furthermore, developed countries will be demanded to commit a small portion of its income, if it could be afforded, to contribute to global organizations such as the Red Cross/Red Crescent and the UN to fight hunger and poverty. The contributors will be rewarded with extra pollution permits at a discounted price.
Income originated from the sale of pollution permits will be used as near free aids to the third world nations. The aid however will be given as long as the receiver commits itself to green economy. At the first sign of diversion from green economy, the receiver will need to repay the aid in full plus backdated interest.
Politically, countries’ traditional borders will be preserved due to cultural difference but within countries, a new kind of political lines will emerge – the ecoregions. Ecoregions are, as stated in Wikipedia, area that has strong ecological connection to other area. These areas will be considered as one political unit. As a simple example, Southeast Asia will be considered as one ecoregion due to its vegetation similarity throughout the region. In introducing new political border, it is hoped that problem such as polluted river or burning forest will be able to be fought effectively. Though this seems to be difficult and annoying redistribution, such method has already been carried among the great lakes states such as Michigan, Illinois and Ontario (3 of the 11 members of the Great Lakes Commission) in order to manage the administrative matters concerning the great lakes. Note that this caucus crosses the US-Canada border.
Free will and democracy will be paramount in governance though it will not be as free as the libertarians would like. Minimal restrictions will be applied in order to maintain social order. Then again, freedom of expression will be observed to almost the fullest extend.
Socially, recycling will be the way of life. To make it a reality, Californian styled system will be practiced. Recyclable consumer products (i.e. cans, bottle etc.) will be sold a little bit higher than its market price. The additional cents will be returned to the buyer once the post-consumer product is returned back to any recycling center. Of course, the price of recyclable product will be lower than any non-recyclable counterpart so as to encourage consumer to buy recyclable product.
Population will be redistributed to various areas so one area will not have too dense with Humans. Also, population control will be enforced through. By doing this, not only could the government prevent overstraining the ecosystem but the social standard including the health system could also be maintained with high standard. Draconian population control however will not be allowed in the constitution because of the observance ofhuman rights.
The opening of new lands will be minimized. Land will only be allowed to be opened for essential activities when it is needed. Land opening for holiday resort, golf course and such will be made difficult if not impossible. Also, to reduce environmental impact due to development, tight Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) will be made compulsory to every project without exception.
Transportation also plays an important role in pollution control. To combat pollution, public transportation will be the main method of moving around and the vehicles ownership will be discouraged by the introduction of special tariffs and taxes. Regular public transportation users (including carpoolers) will be rewarded with various schemes such as privilege in government and privately controlled services. In addition, car manufacturers will be needed to meet high environmental standard (engine efficiency and such) before their products are allowed to hit the street.
Area on land and in the water (the Amazon, Great Coral Reef etc.) that are recognized as essential to biodiversity will be preserved aggressively. No development will be tolerated in the area and violation will be met to the fullest extend of the law.
The Earth will be given time to adapt to us and repair herself. We as Humans will not only give the Earth time, we will also be proactive in repairing her. In this, the hope of a peaceful coexistence between Humans, other biotics, abiotics and Gaia will come to reality.