A growing amount of work tells us that climate change is a significant threat, caused principally by emissions from fossil fuels. But what can we do to decrease emissions and not hurt our economy? We can put a price on carbon and release the powerful forces of the marketplace. Let the market work to decrease demand, drive down emissions and grow innovations. That future is exciting – and profitable. With the collaboration of other advocates I have just launched a new website as a tool for education and advocacy – www.priceoncarbon.org. The website has been endorsed by the LWVUS Advocacy Committee.
At the national LWV convention in June 2014, delegates overwhelmingly passed a resolution to put a price on carbon emissions. All Leagues were encouraged to advocate strongly for it.
California’s cap and trade system puts a price on carbon. The California system is linked with Quebec for trade and covers 85% of all carbon emissions. Nine northeastern states have created The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) to reduce carbon from power plants, also through a cap and trade system. The RGGI covers about 20% of emissions and is popular in the participating states.
Washington and Oregon are moving toward a price on carbon and have joined with California and British Columbia in a regional effort. There are now 29 pricing schemes across the globe, with 12 more planned for the next year or so.
The trend is positive. The timing is now. Share the website with friends in other states and help move the whole country to reduce carbon emissions.
Diz Swift for the Climate Change Team
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