Should Congress enact, and the president sign, a carbon tax?
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No, a carbon tax would be ridiculously ineffective.
By Steve Witherspoon
Activists tell us that a carbon tax will reduce carbon emissions and thus reduce carbon in the atmosphere and slow or reverse global warming. This is a gross exaggeration.
Quantifying the reduction of carbon emissions from a carbon tax cannot be predicted. Any overall reduction would likely be negligible because the tax does not prohibit the activity — it just makes the activity more expensive. Business will absorb the increased cost, find other ways of reducing cost, or pass on the cost to the consumer. In the end, a carbon tax will punish consumers and put more money in the hands of the government, which won’t spend it to solve an unsolvable and naturally recurring trend.
The EPA tells us in its Carbon Monoxide Trends report that since 1980, there has been an 84 percent decrease (8.8 ppm down to 1.4 ppm) in the national average. But wait — we’re being told that we need a carbon tax to reduce overall carbon emissions in order to slow or reverse climate change. Yet we’ve reduced carbon emissions over the past 37 years by 84 percent, and we’re still being told that the climate is getting worse, which requires drastic action like a new tax to fix it? How stupid do they think we are?
The carbon put into our atmosphere by fossil fuels is only a small portion of the carbon put in the atmosphere from other sources. Some estimates say that fossil fuels contribute less than 5 percent of the total carbon in our atmosphere and the United States produces about 15 percent of the world’s CO. If the USA stopped using all fossil fuels overnight, it would only make a 0.75 percent difference in overall global carbon.
So, they want us to believe that an ineffective carbon tax is going to reduce the U.S. carbon output, enough to change the overall global concentration and thus fix climate change. I’m sorry but the numbers and the logic make no sense. I repeat: How stupid do these people they think we are?
Steve Witherspoon works in manufacturing management in Oregon, Wisconsin.
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