The Climate Change Bill - LTE to New York Times
To the Editor:
Re “Climate Loopholes” (editorial, July 22):
Published: August 1, 2009
It’s good to see The Times casting a critical eye on the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill. Letting coal-fired power plants off the hook would certainly be a big step backward in efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Bogus offsets will also allow polluters to game the system as the world heats up.
The closer we look at this legislation, the more apparent it becomes that we have hitched our climate-control wagon to the wrong horse. Even if we achieve the reductions in carbon dioxide called for in this bill — an uncertain prospect — it will be too little and too late.
An analysis by the Carbon Tax Center shows that a steadily rising tax on carbon emissions over the next decade will yield far greater reductions in carbon dioxide levels. Revenue from such a tax could be returned to Americans through payroll or income tax cuts to balance higher energy costs.
The carbon tax-and-dividend is simpler and more effective than cap-and-trade. As you so aptly concluded in your editorial, the “Senate Democrats should not settle for half-measures.”
Co-director, Carbon Tax Center
New York, July 22, 2009