They refer to it as the carbon tax... which is a ridiculous expression. After all, diamonds are pure carbon, but this new tax has nothing to do with riches of that kind.
It's a tax—to become effective in 2010—based upon the production of pollutant carbon dioxide... which is quite another kettle of smelly fish. Wrong again, as far as that last cliché is concerned. Carbon dioxide has no odor... otherwise the world would indeed be a stinking place. This ubiquitous gas is not even toxic in very small concentrations: less than 1% of the air we breathe.
Nicolas Sarkozy has just announced that a tax of 17 euros per ton of CO2 will be "paid by all consumers of fossil fuel" in France. Whether or not you like taxes (I feel that in France, like Guinness, they're good for you), one must admit that this is a big and politically courageous step in the right direction concerning the all-important combat against global warming.
I hope that my native Australia will soon jump on the environmental band wagon, instead of simply letting off CO2-filled steam on this all-important question.