Baucus Ready for Carbon Tax?

Is Senator Max Baucus (D-MT), the chairman of the US Senate Finance Committee, ready for a carbon tax? 

The Hill has this following a recent Christian Science Monitor breakfast featuring Baucus and House Republican Dave Camp (R-MI):

He noted increased interest but said it’s unclear whether the idea of a carbon tax can gain any real political momentum.

“There are more members of the Senate now who openly talk about that than I have experienced. It is creeping up a little bit. Is that going to rise to the level of where it is a very strong, serious provision? I don’t know. But I am not going to pre-judge it,” Baucus said at an event hosted by The Christian Science Monitor.

Baucus said carbon taxes would be among the “non-traditional” revenue sources that Finance Committee members will discuss next Thursday.

The Daily Caller added:

Next month, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will take up carbon tax legislation introduced by California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer  and Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders. Their bill would put a gradually rising tax on carbon dioxide emissions to help fund green energy projects.

“The carbon tax is a bad idea,” said Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, adding that manufacturing output could tumble 15 percent if a carbon tax were to be imposed.

According to NAM, a $20 per ton carbon tax rising at a constant rate of 4 percent per year would reduce emissions by only 30 percent by 2053, and reduce the GDP by $97 billion in 2023.

Read more:

Talking Points Memo:Baucus, Camp Won’t Answer Basic Tax Reform Questions

The bipartisan duo of Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) and Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) frequently discuss their optimism for passing comprehensive tax reform by the end of next year — an ambitious goal that Congress last achieved in 1986.

“Stay tuned,” Baucus told a room full of reporters Friday. “It’s coming.”

But the chairmen of the two powerful tax-writing committees — Baucus chairs the Senate Finance Committee and Camp chairs the House Ways & Means Committee — will not provide answers to the most basic questions about tax reform, including which tax breaks they would get rid of and whether reform would raise any net revenue.

Full video of that breakfast discussion is available via C-Span


A federal judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit from environmentalists who tried to block almost 80,000 acres of oil and gas leases in Montana in a bid to force companies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

U.S. District Judge Sam Haddon said in his ruling that the emissions from future drilling activities would be too small — only a fraction of 1 percent of total emissions in the state — to make a “meaningful contribution” to global greenhouse gas levels.

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