Here’s a perfect chance for conservatives to push a market-based solution to address climate change and ocean acidification. A market-driven revenue-neutral carbon fee and dividend beats out regulation-driven efforts any day — a game-changer rooted in traditional conservative values using a free-market solution without adding to the size of government.
The proposal works like this: Place a steadily-rising tax on the CO2 content of fossil fuels at the first point of sale. Start at $15 per ton of CO2 and increase the tax $10 a ton each year. As a result the cost of coal, oil and gas will go up. For instance, gasoline would rise 13 cents per gallon.
To prevent the fees from being a drag on the economy, return the revenue to consumers, preferably as direct payments — about $300 per year. Border carbon adjustments charge a fee on goods from countries that don’t have their own carbon tax and protect American businesses while incentivizing countries such as China and India to install their own carbon tax as a way to avoid paying ours.
— George Donart