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Congressman to Propose Carbon Tax to Demonstrate Lack of Support

NYT. Congressman John Dingell (D-MI), Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said he plans to propose a carbon tax with the goal of showing that Americans are unwilling to support such a measure.

“I sincerely doubt that the American people will be willing to pay what this is really going to cost them,” said Mr. Dingell, whose committee will be drafting a broad bill on climate change this fall.

“I will be introducing in the next little bit a carbon tax bill, just to sort of see how people think about this,” he continued. “When you see the criticism I get, I think you’ll see the answer to your question.”

Dingell’s proposal would raise the gasoline tax $0.50 per gallon, and  institute a “double digit” tax on each ton of carbon dioxide emitted.

Comments

NeilPackrat

Now that's useful! Let's write a bill so odious that people reject it out of hand. Then we can say that the entire idea is flawed.

jcwinnie

Now would that be Americans, like the one that commuted Scooter's prison term, or like the ones accepting large campaign contributions?

Not to worry, though, I'm sure that kindly Emperor Fossil has an alternative to such an odious tax.

Bike Commuter Dude

I hope this turns around and bites him in the a$$. How funny would it be if the legislation passed, and left this Michigander looking like a total fool!

Lou Grinzo

50 cents and 20 pounds of co2/gallon of gasoline is $50/ton of co2. What's the going rate for carbon credits? Isn't it WAY less than that?

henk daalder

Someone has to pay for the damage that Katrina caused.
This is how it works, tax the products that cause global warming.
And do not forget jetfuel.

And remember, taxing fossil fuel will make the US a lot bigger

Lad

It's too bad the Congress(both parties), and the President(both parties), are controlled by big business through campaign contributions. There is only one political party in the U.S. and it's Big Business.

Watch this politico from Michigan in action; if he didn't seek favors for the auto companies through the AAM lobbying group, he would be turned out of office, defeated by the candidate of big industry.

Cervus

The UAW has a lot of power too, Lad. And they're hardly a right-wing organization. Dingell's constituents are likely a lot of auto workers who would lose their jobs if the auto industry is pushed too hard.

John Schreiber

Would someone please tell Dingo (sic) to be sure to add a line abolishing the IRS to his bill. It makes much more sense to tax carbon emissions instead of income. (income is a good thing, carbon dioxide emissions are bad; a new sin tax!)

glenn

If a carbon tax were properly designed to incorporate "tax shifting", substituting a tax on carbon emissions for payroll tax, etc. and also used to further advance efficiency, conservation and alternative renewable energy, this be the quickest way to reduce GHG. I first encountered the idea of "tax shifting" in Lester Brown's Plan B. Good idea.

Stan Peterson

The only commnet that is at all sane is the suggestion to repeal the income tax, and substitute a carbon consumption tax. Since Income is good and CO2 is "bad".

What will we do when we find CO2 is very beneficial but not a source of but a inconsequential amount of the tiny amount of warming we experience?

Did you know there is 800 billion cu ft of forest today in North America when in 1950 there was only 600 billion cu ft. CO2 "fertilization" and longer growing seasons work wonders.

Bill Young

A carbon tax is the most effective means available to curtail our CO2 emissions and still have a private enterprise, free market economy. This obvious political gesture is aimed at creating an uproar rather than a postive contribution to emissions control.

A carbon tax should start out low and be relentless over the course of two decades or more so that industry and consumers have some adjustment time. The life of a new car is typically 15 years. The life of a new coal fired power plant is 50 years. The primary goal of a carbon tax should be to influence the procurement of captial goods.

Bill Young

A carbon tax is the most effective means available to curtail our CO2 emissions and still have a private enterprise, free market economy. This obvious political gesture is aimed at creating an uproar rather than a postive contribution to emissions control.

A carbon tax should start out low and be relentless over the course of two decades or more so that industry and consumers have some adjustment time. The life of a new car is typically 15 years. The life of a new coal fired power plant is 50 years. The primary goal of a carbon tax should be to influence the procurement of captial goods.

HealthyBreeze

Stan Peterson,

What is your source on the volume of forest timber in 1950 and today? Is it possible that the forests were more depleted in 1950 because we had harvested for a century without replanting prior? The more revealing question is how much forrest wood volume was there in 1850 and 1900 compared to today?

Your data may be correct, but your attributed reason, "carbon fertilization," may be entirely wrong or insignificant.

glenn

Stan: I look up some information on our forests to check your assertion about increased wood volume due to higher CO2 and longer growing seasons and in fact wood volume has been increasing. For a comparison from 1953 to 1997 see fia.fs.fed.us/library/briefings-summaries-overviews/
docs/ForestFactsMetric.pdf

However, you cannot conclude that this is due to global warming. In the reference above, the USFS asserts that about 50% of forest land is in the west and volume of wood in the western forest was about the same in 1997 as it was in 1953 even though the harvest was much reduced.

The increases are most likely due to forest management practices e.g., in the south we have intensive yellow pine plantations instead of low producing climax forests forests and this paper also mentions that there were two spikes in tree planting from conservation programs in 1950 and 1980.

Further they say that the volume of wood in our forests was increasing but the rate was leveling off in the 90's. This does not correlate with increased CO2 and temperature.

It is wrong to suggest that our forests profit from warmer temperatures. More pests may survive in warmer winters. Dryer conditions may eliminate some species in marginal environments and there will be more forest fires.

Further, as the Jasper Ridge Global Change Project concludes, although increases in CO2 can increase productivity, the combined effects of global warming: co2, temperature, rainfall and nitrogen, can retard plant growth.

The idols and false notions which are now in possession of the human understanding, and have taken deep root therein, not only so beset men's minds that truth can hardly find entrance, but even after entrance is obtained, they will again in the very instauration of the sciences meet and trouble us, unless men being forewarned of the danger fortify themselves as far as may be against their assaults.

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