Concrete costs of inaction
I rarely agree with Jennifer Marohasy, but that’s all the more reason for noting our occasional points of agreement. This post points to an important policy failure, the replacement of timber sleepers by energy-intensive concrete throughout Australia’s rail network, with no apparent consideration of greenhouse costs.
Of course, you can’t expect an infrastructure company like he Australian Rail Track Corporation to do detailed climate auditing of all its input materials. As long as the greenhouse costs of concrete, and the benefits of timber, are not reflected in their prices, decisions like this will be made in construction projects of all kinds. So, we need to get a carbon tax or permits trading scheme in place as soon as possible.