Statement on API’s proposed carbon pricing policy


Statement on API’s proposed carbon pricing policy

WASHINGTON D.C., April 21, 2022
– News broke in the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) this morning that the American Petroleum Institute (API), the country’s largest trade association for the oil and gas industry, has drafted a proposal urging Congress to adopt a carbon tax with rebates to Americans. 

CCL is encouraged to see this powerful industry player taking steps to advance this major climate policy. The basic structure of API’s proposal includes a starting price of $35 to $50 per ton of carbon dioxide emissions, with annual adjustments for inflation and other factors (presumably increasing the price). They propose using the revenue for rebates to households and investments in new technology, and they call for border tariffs to keep U.S. businesses competitive. These ideas are in line with the policy Citizens’ Climate Lobby has supported for years. 

API’s proposal was approved by their climate committee and awaits approval by the group’s executive committee, WSJ reports.

“A meaningful, transparent carbon price that cuts emissions and protects American households keeps coming to the forefront of the policy discussion for a reason,” said Ben Pendergrass, CCL Senior Director of Government Affairs. “It is the best policy that we can implement now. Everyone from the IPCC, to a large percentage of Congress, and now the fossil fuel industry agrees on the need to move forward on this policy.”

API correctly states that a carbon fee and dividend policy is “the most impactful and transparent way to achieve meaningful progress on the dual goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions while simultaneously ensuring continued economic growth.” 

That assessment is in line with the leading climate scientists of today, who said in the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that carbon pricing can be efficient and effective. This month, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB) also released a paper analyzing the budgetary impacts of a carbon price, finding the policy would deliver major emissions cuts and a significant amount of revenue.

We hope Congress will respond to these developments by recommitting to the goal of passing major climate policy this year. Citizens’ Climate Lobby volunteers continue to reach out to their elected officials by the thousands, urging them to pass legislation that will speed the transition to clean energy. A national carbon fee and dividend policy is a critical step in that direction.

CONTACT: Flannery Winchester, CCL Senior Director of Communications, 615-337-3642,

Flannery Winchester has put her words to work for magazines, for marketing agencies, and now for our earth as CCL's Communications Director. She is grateful to spend every day working to preserve this beautiful planet.