Ryan Beck

Putting a Price on Carbon

October 09, 2019

Hey Democrats, do you want to cut carbon emissions in half in just ten years? Do you want to increase benefits to the least fortunate among us? Do you want to increase development of green technology so it spreads to other countries?

Hey Republicans, are you concerned that cutting carbon emissions means damaging the economy? Do you believe the vast body of evidence that we should be concerned about our carbon emissions, but don’t think bans on fossil fuels or the many non-environment related provisions in the Green New Deal are the way to do it?

Well you’re in luck, because a carbon tax is perfect for everyone. Overwhelmingly supported by economists as the free market solution to climate change, a sufficiently sized carbon tax could cut our emissions in half in ten years with only minor impact on the economy. If you refund the revenue from the tax equally back into people’s pockets, the least fortunate get more back than they pay in.

Here’s a neat tool that you can play with to show what effect certain carbon tax designs might have on carbon emissions and the economy. Seriously, everyone needs to be talking about putting a price on carbon and making sure our representatives know it’s important.