Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Friday, April 08, 2005

Carbon Tax?

The President of one of the nation's biggest utilities came out in favor of a "Carbon Tax" yesterday. According the this AP story on MSNBC "Duke Energy Corp. will lobby for a tax on carbon dioxide emissions that would reduce fossil fuel consumption and begin addressing the global warming problem, the company’s chairman and chief executive said Thursday. “Personally, I feel the time has come to act — to take steps as a nation to reduce the carbon intensity of our economy,” Paul Anderson told several hundred Charlotte business and civil leaders at a breakfast meeting. “And it’s going to take all of us to do it.” Anderson acknowledged a national carbon tax would mean bigger utility bills and higher prices at the gas pump for consumers. But unless industry leaders take the lead, he said, the long-term outcome could be even more disastrous. “If we (the U.S. energy industry) ignore the issue, we would be the easy target,” he said, referring to lawsuits against the industry. “The worst scenario would be if all 50 states took separate actions and we have to comply with 50 different laws.”
What would be the implications of a carbon tax, besides bigger electric bills for you and me? There could be incentives to switch to other, cleaner fuels, or there could be credits on the tax for activities that promote carbon sequestration, such as increasing forests that would keep carbon dioxide in trees, not in the atmosphere. Suggestions on the LandTrust Listserv point to programs that are beginning like this in California. Check out The Pacific Forest Trust for a link on California's New Forestry Protocols.


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