Sunday, March 29, 2009

Let's more driving!

As I noted some time ago (but only posted just now...), the JGovt has decided that we don't burn enough oil in this country, and decided to do something about it by reducing the tolls on the long distance expressways. It seems quite sensible really, as the oil literally pours out of the ground here faster than we can collect it in barrels, there is no decent public transport, and an august advisory body recently concluded that man-made global warming is a myth anyway. Also, the roads are also far too quiet, and having spent all that money building them we might as well get as much use as possible out of them! Having comfortably exceeded their Kyoto commitments, the JGovt obviously wants to make sure the baseline is as high as possible for any future emissions reductions.

The first results are now in, and I'm happy to say are very encouraging. Traffic on major routes is up by about 50%! Hopefully the data will be useful for those who are interested in questions of price elasticity.

Rumour has it that there are now plans for tax rebates on patio heaters and SUVs.


William M. Connolley said...

!?! So Japan always imports the same amount of oil each year, and can predict this 6 years in advance?

James Annan said...

Presumably just thoughtless infilling of missing data. Actually it would not be beyond the JGovt to decree that this amount of oil will be imported, irrespective of market demands...they do that with food, after all.