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如何减少“无节制飞行”

迈克斯•黑斯廷斯写道,大多数人在气候变化问题上是伪善的,他们不会放弃自己的飞行习惯,直到这个习惯真的让他们破财。他也呼吁对机票征收高昂的“绿色税”以阻止一种过度的飞行文化。

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马克·埃林厄姆因创办了介绍各地的旅游指南系列丛书而发了大财。凭着《气候变化导览》一书,他已经(在英国)最终入围皇家学会科学写作奖候选人名单。 

现在他宣称,“无节制飞行”对全球环境构成了巨大威胁。“如果旅游业照现在这个势头蓬勃发展下去,忽视飞行产生的碳排放对气候变化带来的影响,那么我们就正使自己置身于和烟草工业非常类似的境地中”。这样的一种转变甚至会博得圣保罗的赞扬。

他欣然承认这颇具反讽意味:在所有人中,偏偏是他明确地发出了这个警告。他呼吁适度节制,对我们永不满足的旅行欲进行限制:“我们正生活在这样一个社会里,当人们在周六晚上无所事事的时候,就会到布达佩斯去度过48小时。我们一有机会就到处飞,一年十次或更多。解决这些已迫在眉睫。”

环保主义者会说,埃林厄姆讲的事显而易见,当然还有,这从他口中说出来本身就显得很滑稽。不过,我还是对他的坦诚敬佩有加。我们几乎所有人对气候变化都是说一套做一套。我们清楚那是真的,而且极其严重。然而,我们根本不清楚如何把自己的个人行为与这种现象联系起来。

对于那些生活在发达国家的人来说,旅行的机会代表了过去半个世纪中意义最重大的崭新的个人自由。早在二十世纪60年代,搭便车到希腊和土耳其对于有冒险精神的年轻中产阶级来说是大事一桩,非洲和亚洲则是奢侈的目的地,南美洲和澳大利亚几乎遥不可及。

今天,只要花上几百英镑就可以飞到几乎任何地方,我们也都是这么做的。每一架抵达内罗毕、胡志明市或布宜诺斯艾利斯的飞机都运来大量的旅游团和背包客。短假期越来越兴旺,这意味着乘飞机越来越频繁。从英国出发,短假期的目的地包括了开普敦和迪拜。

常识告诉我们,所有这些对环境来说都是灾难性的。但常识又告诉我们,旅游正对全世界贫穷社会的经济发展做出巨大贡献。当飞机把鲜花和蔬菜从非洲和墨西哥运到欧洲和美国时,碳排放也随之剧增。然而,如果中止这种运输,数百万从事种植业的穷人利益就会遭受损失。

所有这些让我们许多人和埃林厄姆一样困惑。相对而言,旅行热方兴未艾。在未来几十年里,还会有更多的数以百万计的人拥有飞行条件和欲望,他们会飞得更远、更频繁。例如,中国人刚刚开始发现在海外度假的乐趣。建议那些生活在新兴经济国家的人们放弃旅行,就如同现代西方在大批屠杀了一两个世纪的非洲大型动物后,会产生拯救这些动物的热情。

即使在西方,让一个政府试图去控制选民飞行的热情在政治上也是危险的,正如很少有民主国家敢于干涉民众驾车的自由。所有行之有效的控制都必须基于定价。不过,如果让穷人旅行变得更困难,富人却可逍遥飞行,这在政治竞选演说里听起来也不妙。

最佳也是最简单的办法将是征收航空燃料税,以终止这么一种疯狂的反常现象:开飞机便宜,而开汽车却在世界上几乎所有国家(除了伊朗和美国)都成本高昂。但是,达成一个行之有效的征收航空燃料税的国际协议几乎是不可能的。没有一个国家的政府会单方面采取行动,而坐视其航空工业流向别国的。

埃林厄姆建议对从英国飞往欧洲和非洲的航班机票征收100英镑(200美元)的“绿色税”,而对更远程的航班机票征收250英镑(500美元)的“绿色税”。这样做的第一个好处就是控制英国国内的短途飞行。乘火车去纽卡斯尔或爱丁堡的费用比坐飞机要贵得多是件很荒唐的事情。包括我自己在内的许多人喜欢火车,只不过因为费用高才不敢去坐。

一些目的地国家能够从劝阻低预算的旅行者中获益,因为这些旅行者对这些国家环境的消耗多过他们的消费。肯尼亚的山布鲁国家公园目前因建造两家有500张床位的旅馆而受到威胁。山布鲁是一个小地方,以大象闻名。如此众多的游客将毁坏其脆弱的生态系统。从理性、长远的观点着眼,新旅馆无疑会损害山布鲁的利益,而从更少的游客身上赚得更多的钱才符合山布鲁的利益。但旅馆计划还将进展下去,仅仅因为少数人可以从建设工程中获得可观收益。

低预算旅行者给世界上的旅游胜地制造了难题。威尼斯市长马希莫·卡西亚里想对每年来威尼斯的2000万游客每人征收1欧元(1.35美元)的,以缓解因他们的到来而造成的巨额市政开销。威尼斯目前正竭力禁止在圣马可广场进行野餐活动,禁止袒胸露背或穿比基尼在街上行走。

威尼斯的市民说,这听起来有点自命不凡,但其实现在有大量的旅游者几乎什么钱都不花,其行为举止有损于他们为之慕名前来的优美雅致。包括罗马佛罗伦萨在内的其它意大利城市也正在起草行为规范,以限制游客的粗野行为。

民主人士可能会对此大发雷霆:“你们想只让有钱的杂种来观看这些世界奇观吗?”但一个显而易见的事实是,到某地观光的人越多,对该地造成的破坏也就越大。埃林厄姆还说:“经过权衡所有的肯定和否定的意见,我不认为有什么所谓的‘负责的’或‘道德的’假日。”

对环境的坏消息是,根本没人相信全球旅游热会止步。不论英国或整个西方世界在意识到气候变化后采取什么措施,其它许多刚刚体验到繁荣的国家都不会愿意剥夺其国民的权利。

然而,从对气候变化的其它反应来看,我们没有理由什么也不做。即使英国政府被迫单方面行动,通过课税来提高航空旅行的费用也肯定是正确的做法。的确,不这么做的话是不负责任的。

埃林厄姆敦促我们所有人对旅行进行自律,拒绝屈从于“无节制飞行”。但只有少数有思想的人,即那些购买有机产品的人,才有可能听从他的劝告。我们中的大多数人只有在被迫时才会改变坏习惯。只有当更多的飞行让我们大大破财时,我们才会节制飞行。埃林厄姆无疑是对的,必须那样去做,所有人都赞赏他的言论。

首页图片由since1968's

本文来源:http://environment.guardian.co.uk/

《卫报》新闻传媒有限公司2007版权所有

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Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

绿色税会有效吗?

我不认为对机票增加绿色税收会促进飞行的减少,因为旅行是不可避免的,而且只要能承担得起,航空旅行总是首选之一。

如果没有好的机制来确保绿色税收最终被用来解决环境问题,那么这样的税收最终只会增加航空公司的收入和增加某些集团的利益。在我看来,这样的可能性很大。这样一来,绿色税收就失去了原本的目的和意义。

环境问题的解决最终是人自身愿意去改变生活方式和科技的进步。其它方式,在某种意义上,只是暂时解决了问题,但没有解决问题的根源。

Dongying in London

Would a green tax be effective?

I don’t think a 'green tax' on air fare would help reduce air travel. Not only is travel unavoidable, but as long as flying is affordable, it will remain a preferred mode of travel. Unless there is good regulation on air travel which insures that 'green tax' is ultimately used to help solve environmental problems, such a tax would only increase the airline’s income, and bolster the profits of certain groups in the end. This is a very likely outcome in my opinion. Should this be the case, 'green tax' would lose its original purpose and meaning. A solution to environmental problems is ultimately dependent on the individual's willingness to change their lifestyles and technological progress. In other words, alternative ways of dealing with the problem only provide temporary solutions, and do not address the root causes.

Dongying in London

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

Re:绿色税会有效吗?

航空在远程旅行中的确实是几乎不可替代的,不是每个人都有时间去选择乘火车从伦敦到北京。但是英国和欧洲最近几年的航空需求以接近10%的速度递增,很大部分都是欧洲,西欧甚至是国家内部的廉价航空。这样的选择对大气变化造成的影响是相当大的,在这种中短途旅行中,火车是最有能源和碳排放效率的旅行方式,也应该是首选,但已经被很多人忽略了。人们宁愿去排队拥挤的过安检,挤在窄小的经济舱里,以及驱车往返远离市区的机场,却不愿在火车上悠闲的度过几乎相同的旅行时间。必须承认,价格是影响人们选择的一个重要因素。我很多时候也会因为价格原因不得不放弃乘火车的计划。用价格机制去影响人们对中短途旅行的选择,同时减少不必要的远程旅行,是很有效的环境经济手段。

对航空业征税是一个调节得好办法,也迫使人们认识到选择航空旅行所造成的环境代价。你说得很对,如何使用航空绿色是很重要的问题,也会影响到人们对绿色税的接受态度,但这是如何制定绿色税的问题,而不应该成为反对绿色税的理由。

从某种意义上说,正是人们生活方式的改变和科学技术的进步导致了今天我们面临的环境问题。缺少科学以及伦理引导和政策约束的对生活方式和技术进步的放任自流早已被证明是不可取的。

王韬

Re: Would a green tax be effective?

I think that long-haul flights are almost irreplaceable, because not everyone has the time to choose a train from London to Beijing.
But in these last years the request for flights increased of more than 10 % in England and Europe, so that in Western Europe there are low-cost airlines even for domestic flights. This choice has considerable effects on the changes of the atmosphere. If we are going to have a short journey, train should be our first choice since it discharges the lowest quantity of carbon-emissions, but lots of people neglect it.
People would line in front of a long check-in, crowd into a narrow business lounge, drive cars from and to an airport generally quite far from their cities, rather than spending some idle time on a train, which in total would take almost the same journey time.
We have to admit that price is an important factor for the choice.
Because of the price I renounced many times to my idea of getting on a train.
A price policy can influence people’s choice on short journeys, at the same time it will reduce the unnecessary long flights, so could be an effective method to improve the environment conditions.
As for the introduction of taxes, it could be a good way to deter flying, and would force people to recognize the weight of their choice on the environment.
You’re right, whether to introduce a green tax is an important matter, and also to figure out how to make people accept it, but the problem to formulate it or not should not turn into reasons against the green tax.
From a certain point of view, we must say that is the transformation in man’s way of living and the scientific and technological progress that led us to face the environmental problem today. We cannot ignore that this is the consequence of a prolonged refuse of ethical principles and restrictions in man’s way of living and of an extreme faith in the technical progress.
Wang Tao

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

对第二个评论的回应:廉价航空和对航空增加绿色税收

我部分赞成你的观点:那就是航空公司之间通过减低票价来获得市场的做法是会促成人们放弃火车而选择飞机。

廉价航空和对航空增加绿色税收是两个概念。我不赞成廉价航空带来的负面影响。

我还是坚持我的观点,在没有确实的方案来说明这样的税收将如何被用来改善环境之前(取之于民,用之于民),实施这样的税收制度是对公众利益的不付责任。我不认为,乘客会有时间和精力去调查他们上的航空税最终对环境改善的作用。

在任何一个国家,有的好的制度才能确保大众的利益。

而且,有报道表明,航空只造成了3%全球温室气体的排放。所以,对航空征税更应该有好的机制。

我想,遏制航空公司的低价竞争比征税更能制止人们消费行为的恶化。但要减少必要的航空飞行是不现实的。保护和解决环境问题,是需要我们改变生活方式,而不是减低我们的生活水平,否则社会也就没有必要发展了。

Dongying

Re comment 2: low fair airline and green tax to aviation

I partly agree with you, that airline companies cut prices to compete for market share will encourage people to travel by plain instead of by train. Low fair airlines and the green tax introduced to aviation sector are two concepts. I don't support the negative effects brought about by low fair airlines, but I would still stick to my point, that without a clearly specified solution explaining how the tax would be used to improve the environment, to introduce a tax like that can only be an irresponsible one to public interest. I don't think passengers will have the time and energy to do research themselves on the environmental improvement of the aviation tax they paid for. In any country, public interest can only be safeguarded with good rules and regulations. Moreover, as reported, aviation only contributed 3% to the world's emission of greenhouse gas. See the report here. Therefore, aviation tax deserves a thoughtful mechanism. I think, to stop them from price competition would be a more effective way to prevent further worse-off of consumer behavior. But it is unrealistic to reduce necessary flies. Protecting the environment and solving the problems is about changing our lifestyles, instead of lowering our living standards. Otherwise, there will be no meaning for the society to develop.

Dongying

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

回复评论1

为什么绿色税会增加航空公司的收益?诚然税收会增加政府收入,这是反对绿色税的诸多观点(不那么有说服力的)之一:这是政府骗钱的诡计。当然,事实是航空公司和政府都会从降低的税收和发达起来的航空业中得到经济收益,但环境承受不了,所以政府才必须通过税收之类的方式来介入。

Re: comment 1

Why would a green tax increase the airlines' takings? Surely a tax would increase government earnings, which is one of the (less convincing) arguments that opponents to green taxes put forward: that it is a government ruse for more money. The truth is, of course, that both airlines and governments would benefit economically from lower taxes and a thriving aviation sector - but the environment can't take it. So government has to step in with methods such as taxation.

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

RE RE

绿色税应该由政府根据航空公司的飞行记录向他们收取,至于激烈竞争下航空公司又有没有足够的定价能力把政府对他们征收的税全额转嫁给消费者,那是另一回事。但在税款上,除非政府让步或腐败,航空公司没有获利空间,反而会因为客流减少而受到冲击。看看英国最大廉价航空公司Ryanair的老板多么不遗余力反对航空绿色税就知道他们的态度了。

政府如何使用这笔税款,或者用来补贴其它公共交通,或者用于投资开发环境友好技术,或用来减少气候变化影响,各种途径,都可以在绿色税开征之初对公民交待清楚并接受监督,也可以考虑成立专门基金确保专款专用,还惠于民。英国在2001年就实施了气候变化税(Climate Change Levy)对企业使用的能源征税,将所得税金一部分用于成立碳基金(carbon trust)支持减排技术和提高能效,同时通过减免社会保险税的方式返还部分税款减小对企业的冲击。这些都可以作为航空绿色税的成功借鉴。

航空业和国际航运业的确在现在的全球温室气体中所占份额不高。但是这两各行业在全球化进程中体现出的远超其他行业的高速发展,以及自身的其他特点决定了需要迫切的关注而有力的引导。首先,飞机的寿命很长,20-30年,通过技术更新换代提高效率的速度很慢;其次,航空也缺乏替代燃料,混合动力或者氢可能在未来10-20年用于汽车,但作为飞机动力还很遥远;飞机在飞行中过程中除了二氧化碳排放,本身也对大气变化有额外的影响。

征税本身就是遏制航空公司的低价竞争,通过宣传和普及知识鼓励人们主动改变生活方式同样重要。没有人说要放弃必要的飞行,全球化的时代飞行本身是一种必要,但我们需要考虑是不是现在所有的飞行都必要?也没有人喜欢降低生活水平,但为了全球的公共环境利益放弃一些不必要的奢侈旅行(环境意义的奢侈而非金钱意义的奢侈)似乎不是降低生活水平的标志,因为大气变化将影响我们每一个人将来的生存环境。更甚一步,用什么来衡量一个人的生活水平,海外旅行次数,人均汽车占有量,电气化程度,人均能耗还是其他更有意义的指标?如果每个人都不愿意为了公共利益降低自己的生活水平,那么地球上的每一个人都有权利向美国的人均碳排放看齐,问题是,我们只共享一个地球。

王韬

回复 回复

The amount of green taxes imposed upon airlines by the government should go along with airways’ traffic volume. This is different from the situation that passengers rather than airlines paying for the taxes due to competition between airways.

Airlines will not benefit financially from the tax system, unless the government compromises or is corrupted. Usually, airlines will suffer from the decrease in the number of passengers discouraged by the increased fares. The objection by Ryanair to the green tax is a good example.

How the government will use the taxation could be clarified to the public beforehand and its application should be subject to scrutiny. Such taxes may be used for subsidizing the public transport system, developing green technologies and mitigating climate change impacts.

The climate Change Levy the UK introduced in 2001 to impose tax on energy used by enterprises is a successful case for a green tax. Part of the taxation from the Climate Change levy was used for the establishment of Carbon Trust, which aims to develop emission-cutting technologies and help increase energy efficiency.

It is true that aviation and shipping industries contribute less to greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. But urgent attention is needed to deal with their impact upon climate change due to their growth at a much higher speed than other sectors. They need good guides for further development. Planes have a relatively long lifespan of 20 to 30 years, and it takes a long time to increase air transport efficiency with new technologies.

Meanwhile, aviation industry is also short of alternative fuels. Mixed power and hydrogen might be used to power vehicles in two decades at the latest, but it is still too early to consider using such fuels for planes.

Besides CO2 emissions, flights also cause other impacts upon the atmosphere.

Green taxes aim to ease the low-fare competition between airlines. It is also equally important to disseminate knowledge about environmental protection and to encourage people to change their lifestyles.

Nobody would suggest giving up necessary travels by plane. Flying is a necessity in this globalized era. But we need to think of how many of these flights are necessary.

Also nobody expects their living standards to be lowered. But it does not necessarily mean their living standards are lowered when unnecessary flights have to be given up for the sake of public interest.

Moreover, what are the criteria for higher and lower living standards? Can we judge it by the number of overseas travels, car-user ratios, electrified industries, per capita energy consumption and other more meaningful indices.

If no one is willing to lower her/his living standards to save the world, then we all deserve the right to emit as much carbon as the Americans, who top the world with their per capita emission. But the issue is: We have only one Earth. By Wangtao

Default avatar
匿名 | Anonymous

一载十飞?

嗨我是本。并不是所有人都像作者所说的那样“无节制飞行”。在英国“空中常客”只占50%,我已经两年没有上过飞机了。到目前为止有1700人加入了“飞行誓约联盟”,其中有2/3发誓除紧急情况外不选择飞行。强大的实力意味着重量级的责任。我并不是在说英国政府,因为他们的政策要航空增长。那些“无节制飞行”的人应被责难。我写了一首关于这些蠢货的歌,写得不是很好,有点粗鲁,参见我的网站。 这里

10 flights a year?

Hi I'm Ben. Not everyone "binge flies" as the author suggests. In the UK only 50% are "high fliers" and I have not been on a plane for 2 years.
So far 1,700 people have joined the "Flight Pledge Union", 2/3 of whom promised not to fly except in an emergency.
Great power comes with great responsibility. I am not talking about the UK government because their policy is to increase flights. Those who "binge fly" are to blame. I wrote a song about these pigs which is not very good and a little rude, and on my website. here

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匿名 | Anonymous

绿色税收不会带来好的效果!!

看了上面的评论,就想说两句。虽然生活水平提高了,乘飞机也还不是一个随意就做的决定,毕竟它同其它交通方式比起来,还是昂贵的选择。

只有有钱人和不用自己掏腰包的人,才会总是选择乘飞机。

绿色税收只会使不乘飞机的人更不会选择飞机,但对大部分乘飞机的人是不会有大的影响。

且不论税收的最后用处等其它因素,我想,真正能解决问题的是开发其它更环保的旅行方式,和加大科技进步。

Green tax will not be effective.

I cannot help saying something after reading all comments above.

Though living standards are improving, to fly is still not an easy option for most people as it remains to be more expensive than other traveling means.

Only rich people and those who do not need to pay for flights could afford to fly as always.

The introduction of green taxes will only further discourage those who could not afford to fly, but will matter less to those who fly frequently.

Not to challenge the usage of taxes in the end and other negative points of the measure, I think to develop more environmental-friendly transportation means and to improve technology application are more effective.

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匿名 | Anonymous

中国与欧洲的不同

在中国这样幅员辽阔和铁路交通仍然很便宜的国家中,乘飞机的确是昂贵的选择,很多时候也是不得已必需的选择。但越来越多的机票折扣正在改变这种情况。
但在欧洲,或者至少在英国,情况大不一样。廉价航空和私有化的铁路已经在很多时候让飞机票价只有火车票价的1/3甚至更少,在这种情况下,乘飞机的人不是因为有钱,不乘飞机的人也不是因为买不起票。在英国和欧洲提出绿色税的目的不是让人减少必要的出行,而是让人们在对交通方式进行选择时认识到自己的选择会有不同的环境代价,同时志愿的减少不必要的飞行。这些情况应该区别对待。

没有政策可以单独的兼顾公平和效率。绿色税对绝大部分人的选择会有不同程度的影响,也可能对一些富人丝毫没有影响,他们不在乎,甚至他们可以开自己的游艇或私人飞机出行。因此绿色税也需要和其他政策协同来解决这个问题,让富人承担更多的责任,体现社会的公平和维护和谐。

王韬

China is different from Europe

In countries like china with vast area and cheap railways, traveling by flight is indeed an expensive choice, most of the times, a have-to decision. However, the increasing number of discount airline tickets is changing the scene.

However, in Europe, at least in UK, it is different. The coexistence of low fair airlines and privatized railways usually makes an airline ticket as cheap as 1/3 of its train counterpart, or even less. Under this circumstance, people traveling by air isn't because they are rich, and their not traveling by air isn't because they cannot afford it. To introduce green tax to the aviation sector in the UK and Europe is not to make people cut their necessary travels, but to make them aware of the environmental prices associated with their choices while making an informed decision, at the meantime voluntarily reduce unnecessary flies. These should be treated seperately.

Not a single policy can treat justice and efficiency seperately. Green tax may influence choices of the majority of people, but it may have no influence at all to the super-rich, as they don't really care and they can even travel with their own boat or private jet. Therefore, green tax also needs to collaborate with other policies to resolve the issue, to make the wealthy shoulder more responsibilites, and to achieve justice and harmony in the society.

Tao Wang

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匿名 | Anonymous

对评论9的回复

那么说来,如果引入了绿色税收,那么在伦敦乘英国国内或者欧洲的航班要上绿色税,但从伦敦飞到北京或者其它发展中国家城市的人就不用上税了。你觉得这样可能吗??

Re comment 9

In this sense, if introduced, a green tax should be paid when we fly within UK or within Europe, but not when we fly from London to Beijing or cities in other developing nations. Do you think it is possible??

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匿名 | Anonymous

不要简单化

国际间航空上不上税,上多少税,取决于各国政府和国际航空公司之间的协商的结果,不是一刀切那么简单。即使只在欧洲,英国收税,其他国家不收会造成国际间航线的转移,同样是个要考虑的问题。但是不可否认的一点是,发达国家有义务也有能力在一些问题上率先做出减排努力,而英国政府这几年的政策也表达了这样的政治意愿。欧洲内部已经建立了碳排放许可交易机制,强迫自己的企业对碳排放付费,这也没有包括发展中国家,但同时希望将来像中国这样的发展中国家能加入这个机制。航空绿色税为什么不可以一样?

王韬

No simplification please

Imposing a tax on international air travel, as well as determining the degree of taxation, cannot be executed simply. It depends on negotiation among different governments and aviation companies. Only imposing a tax in Europe and UK but not other countries will shift the consumption of international travel, which is also an issue to consider. But there's one thing we can't deny, that developed countries have responsibilities and are capable of taking their due efforts in carbon reduction, and UK government has shown political will with their recent policies. Within Europe, a tradable permit of carbon emission has been installed, forcing the firms to pay for their carbon emissions. This mechanism hasn't included developing countries, but developing countries like China will hopefully be part of it someday. Why can't aviation green tax be the same?

Tao Wang