Aug 302014
 

I have long supported the idea of a carbon tax because it is the most direct way for corporate polluters cover the cost they are now pushing onto taxpayers.  In several nations, the carbon tax ix making inroads.  Chile, for one, is making excellent progress since throwing off the murderous Pinochet dictatorship, established by Nixon, Kissinger, and the US Republican Party in 1971.

0830chile_glacierIt’s a big year for fighting climate change in Chile. A carbon tax is set to go before its House of Representatives next week, as part of a larger tax reform package that includes measures intended to fight air pollution and climate change. Chile would become the first country in South America to institute a carbon tax, and the second in Latin America after Mexico, which imposed its carbon tax in January.

A carbon tax is what it sounds like. The government charges emitters of carbon pollution for every metric ton they release into the atmosphere. Carbon taxes are gaining popularity as a way to massively cut the amount of carbon dioxide put into the atmosphere, while creating jobs, raising incomes, and cutting deficits in countries where they’re implemented. British Columbia, Canada has had a carbon tax since 2008 and has seen success cutting energy use and carbon emissions, and giving revenue from the tax back to low-income families to offset higher energy prices.

Chile’s initial tax will be $5 per ton of CO2, and Mexico’s taxes fuels at different rates, averaging out to about $3.50 per ton. Those are both pretty low, but once a carbon tax is in place, it can be raised. British Columbia’s started at C$10 per ton in 2008, ramping up over the years to C$30 in 2012. A study in California found that even a $200-a-ton carbon price would actually help businesses and create jobs in the state, though it’s far higher than anything that has been tried yet.

There is currently no carbon tax in the United States, and any attempt to pass one would be extremely difficult, thanks in part to a pledge from the Koch-backed organization Americans For Prosperity that requires signers to “oppose any legislation relating to climate change that includes a net increase in government revenue.” A third of the U.S. House of Representatives and a quarter of Senators have signed the pledge… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <Think Progress>

In 2008, Obama supported a Carbon Tax, while both Clinton and the Republican Party supported Cap and Trade.  In a misbegotten early attempt to foster bipartisanship, Obama switched to Cap and Trade, and the Republican Party disowned it immediately, calling it Cap and Tax and a Socialist, Kenyan conspiracy.  Now Republicans just support polluters, because that what the Koch Brothers want.  So we get to suck pollution, while Republican politicians suck … never mind.

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  16 Responses to “Carbon Tax Makes Inroads”

  1. "So we get to suck pollution, while Republican politicians suck … never mind."  Exactly.

  2. What are the so-called “Senators” and “Representatives” going to do with all that money they get from the Koch-suckers when there is nothing left to breath and no water to drink?
    They signed the death warrant for every person on earth if they don’t change things and change them NOW!! Climate change is all to real, at this stage of the game!

  3. I agree, tc, the carbon tax requires the polluters to pay, instead of the tax payer.  Gene on Care 2 gave an excellent summary of how we got to this place and why we are still there.  As long as the Koch brothers own our government, not much will change.

  4. As a Canadian, and a British Columbian, I am very proud of our position, but it is no time to sit on our laurels. There have been some suggestions that we should be scrapping the carbon tax in favour of cap and trade but it has not yet been done.

    "Prime Minister Stephen Harper repeatedly claims that a carbon tax would “destroy jobs and growth.” Yet the evidence from the province that actually passed such a tax – British Columbia – tells a different story."

    From the Globe and Mail, http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/the-insidious-truth-about-bcs-carbon-tax-it-works/article19512237/ , our resident 'Republican/Teabagger' Prime Minister, a climate change denier, doesn't see a carbon tax in a positive light.  But then he represents Alberta with its fossil fuel and bitumen production.  Forget the fact that he is supposed to represent all of Canada.

    Here is a link to the Province of BC Ministry of Finance and the carbon tax. http://www.fin.gov.bc.ca/tbs/tp/climate/A1.htm

    As you can see, it is designed to be revenue neutral and it makes returns to low income individuals and families.  For example, I am a low income individual and will receive $115.50 for 2014 payable in 4 payments ending 01/04/15.  It might not seem like much, but it is better than a kick in the teeth.

    In addition to this, we pay 'recycling' fees on such things as car batteries, electronics, car tires, plastic bottles (water, soda etc) and many juice cartons just to name a few.  In addition, the province, effective 01 August 2014, updated its recycling guidelines to reduce landfill use.  This does not totally affect me yet since I live in a condominium, but there are new regulations providing for composting etc and returning packaging to the manufacturer for disposal.  This last is to have manufacturers look for more efficient and environmentally friendly ways to produce and market their products.  I know that I have very little waste now and a lot of recycling. Others around me say the same.  Now if I could only get my cats to use the toilet, I'd have even less waste!

    • Thanks for the excellent update on Canada.

      Don't you dare charge the cats a recycling fee on kitty shit!!

      • 1) I'd resist any charge for recycling kitty shit!

        2) Who in their their right (or left) mind would want to recycle kitty shit? . . . other than a Republican looking for yet another revenue stream.

        I'd just like them to pee and poop in the toilet . . . flushing optional!

      • To be truthful, this is just BC.  Ontario for example, have different priorities and policies.  For example, in BC if one buys a bottle of soda, there is a $.05 deposit fee and a $.03 enviro fee in addition to the cost of the product.  When the empty bottle is returned to the store, the $.05 is returned to the consumer.  Where as in Ontario, the empty soda bottle is just tossed in the recycling waste that the city picks up.  There is more incentive in BC to see that the bottle is returned.

        Something I learned this past April when I was in Ontario, the amount of water going into the house is measured, but also the amount of water leaving in the sewer system is also measured and it shows up on the monthly water bill in real dollars due and payable.  Such is not the case here in BC, yet!

  5. We should all be paying Carbon Taxes – so long as the money raised does actually go to fighting climate change.  Hooray for Chile.  (Either Australia has or soon will repeal their Carbon Tax – Abbott hates it – but I bet prices won't go down – they all went up to accommodate the Carbon Tax…..).

    • I agree.  It should go to research and development of green energy, reforestation, and helping the poor pay for green energy.