Saturday, March 27, 2010

Cap and Trade Fades Away

According to the NY Times, Democrats are abandoning their last year's plan to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, "cap and trade." A cap and trade system would grant utilities and other manufacturers permits to release a certain amount of CO2, which they could then use or sell to someone else. Because they would have to buy these permits, this would amount to a sort of back door tax. It would be a lot more complicated than a tax on the carbon content of fuels, and really its only advantage would be that politicians supporting it could say they did not support a tax increase. So I am happy to see it die. At some point in the future, perhaps in the middle of a really hot summer, they may even find the nerve to enact a sensible carbon tax.

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