Despite being delighted to have our work taken seriously and critiqued, we are disappointed that Jotzo and Hatfield–Dodds have missed some of our key points. In case this was not sufficiently clear, let us state at the outset that we recognise Ross Garnaut’s efforts to shape government policy on climate change. We sought to highlight some of the obstacles that have stopped him and others from doing this. That one of newly re-installed Prime Minster Kevin Rudd’s first acts was to abandon the carbon tax rather confirms our claims about the difficulty facing even the most authoritative commentators in encouraging policymakers to take a long view of optimal policy in this area. It is one thing to draw attention to an issue; it is quite another to bring about a meaningful, long-term change in policy.