Surprise: Carbon Scheme Pricing And Taxes Are Just Too Darned Low

One of the things members of the Cult Of Climastrology, including elected officials, media outlets, and low hanging Warmists, constantly push for is a “carbon tax”, usually in a manner that they think will only effect Other People. And they always tell us that this artificial construct would be the free market in action. For instance, here’s one I ran across at the Miami Herald in a letter to the editor from Walt Minnick, cofounder of the Partnership for Responsible Growth, a hardcore Progressive group out of D.C. pushing for all sorts of climate change schemes. Here’s what he calls “innovative solutions”

(1) Rely on the free market instead of more EPA regulation. If Congress approves a fee on carbon emissions, business will become more energy-efficient, and consumers will buy less carbon-based fuel.

(2) Use half of the revenue generated to reduce our corporate tax rate, the highest in the industrialized world, to 25 percent and return the balance to low- and low-middle-income families to offset their slightly higher energy costs;

See? Free market! And an acknowledgement that these schemes will increase costs. Returning (tiny amounts) of money back to low and middle class families makes them even more reliant on Government. Anyhow, free market!

Carbon pricing schemes double since 2012 in climate fight: World Bank

The number of carbon pricing schemes worldwide has almost doubled since 2012 but most taxes or markets have prices too low to prevent damaging global warming, the World Bank said on Sunday.

Carbon pricing, including emissions trading schemes from California to China, now covers about 12 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in a sign of momentum before a U.N. summit on climate change in Paris in December, it said. (snip)

The study showed that prices, meant to shift investments from fossil fuels toward cleaner energies such as wind or solar power, ranged from less than a dollar a tonne of carbon dioxide in Mexico to $130 a tonne in Sweden.

In more than 85 percent of cases the price was less than $10, “considerably lower”, the report said, than levels needed to help limit temperature rises to a U.N. goal of 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times.

So, once Government has instituted these schemes, the Free Market has determined that the values are not worth much, and Warmists want them artificially increased. In fact, many of these schemes have been deemed as “worse than junk bonds“.

The free market also dictates that companies will move away from areas that have these carbon tax schemes, or work hard to avoid paying them. There is a lot of fraud occurring. They increase costs to the consumers and reduce jobs. Governmental intervention in the free market hasn’t worked out so well.

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10 Responses to “Surprise: Carbon Scheme Pricing And Taxes Are Just Too Darned Low”

  1. Jeffery says:

    usually in a manner that they think will only effect (sic) Other People.

    How does that policy work? I assume most taxes I support will affect me, not just others.

    they always tell us that this artificial construct would be the free market in action.

    It’s actually market balancing. Fossil fuels receive massive direct and even more massive indirect subsidies. Recall the economic concept of negative externalities? Our burning of fossil fuels for energy pollute the air and water, impact human health, wreak havoc on the environments from which they are recovered and most threatening, are the cause of the current and near future global warming. How do we account for these unrecovered costs of using fossil fuels? A true free-market mandates that businesses be responsible for any damages they cause. Your idea of a free-market is that anyone, anytime can sell anything they want and ignore the outcomes. That’s anarchy, not free-markets.

    Once we “deregulated” the home finance markets (thanks, Bill) the free-market was free to fuck people out of their homes. Then when the Ponzi scheme collapsed the taxpayers paid the crooks billions so they wouldn’t have to suffer.

  2. jl says:

    Again, the fossil fuel industry doesn’t receive “massive direct and even more massive indirect subsidies.” Nice try again, J. A subsidy is a subsidy- there’s no direct and indirect, except in your head. It’s the government giving money to someone. For the most part, they’re not giving money to the fossil fuel industry- they’re letting them keep more of what they made. It’s called a tax break, not a subsidy. That you continually misrepresent this shows the shallowness of your “argument”. And they are not the cause of the”current and near future global warming.” But I love the “free beer tomorrow” and “global warming is going to happen” analogy. Trust us- all these bad things will happen. Someday. Said the astrologer.

  3. Dana says:

    And the left elites wonder why the Democrats are losing the votes of the white working class.

  4. Dana says:

    From The Wall Street Journal:

    How to Lower U.S. Living Standards
    The drastic ‘80 by 50’ goal would reduce the energy use of Californians to that of North Koreans today.
    By Robert Bryce | Sept. 21, 2015 7:01 p.m. ET

    California Gov. Jerry Brown has a vision: When it comes to greenhouse-gas emissions, he wants his fellow Californians to emulate North Koreans. Meanwhile, many of Mr. Brown’s fellow Democrats—including President Obama, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders—will settle for putting Americans on a par with residents of Mexico.

    That’s the essence of the climate-change agenda of America’s most prominent Democrats. They have pledged to cut carbon-dioxide emissions by 80% by 2050, (aka 80 by 50). Their plan will take those emissions to levels that are common today in countries far poorer than the U.S.

    Earlier this month, by a margin of two votes, the California Assembly rejected SB 32, a bill that would have required the state to achieve 80 by 50. Pushing this bill was the state’s Democratic leadership, including Gov. Brown, Senate President Kevin de León, and the state’s U.S. senators, Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. President Obama has repeatedly endorsed 80 by 50. In early 2009, he said he was setting “a goal for our nation that we will reduce our carbon pollution by more than 80 percent by 2050.”

    With the exception of Virginia’s former Sen. Jim Webb, all of the candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for president have called for 80 by 50. Mrs. Clinton endorsed 80 by 50 during her first run for the White House. In 2013, Mr. Sanders joined Ms. Boxer to introduce an 80-by-50 bill. In 2014, Martin O’Malley issued an executive order while governor of Maryland endorsing 80 by 50.

    All of this overlooks an essential question: What would 80 by 50 mean for individuals? According to the International Energy Agency, the world per capita average for carbon-dioxide emissions is 4.51 tons a year. Residents of California are responsible for the emission of about twice that amount, 9.42 tons a year. Assuming that the state population doesn’t increase, an 80% cut means the average Californian would be emitting 1.88 tons by 2050.

    In other words, those future Californians will be asked to emit less carbon dioxide than do current residents of North Korea. In 2012, according to the IEA, the average North Korean was responsible for 1.83 tons of carbon dioxide. Per capita GDP in North Korea: $1,800 a year.

    There’s more at the link, but it’s simple: the left want to set goals for which the technology to achieve them does not yet exist. Nor is there any clear path to developing such technology. The one path in which the technology does exist, nuclear energy, is opposed by the majority of the left.

    What would 80 by 50 cost? None of the Democrats has provided a cost estimate, but we can get an idea by looking at Germany, which has set a goal of getting 80% of its energy from renewables by 2050.

    Germany has already spent $100 billion on subsidies for renewables and its environment minister, Peter Altmaier, has estimated that hitting its 80 by 50 target will require spending another $1.3 trillion over the next two decades. The U.S. economy is four times as large as Germany’s, and U.S. energy consumption is seven times as large. Reaching 80 by 50 in the U.S. would likely cost more than $5 trillion. For reference, the cost of ObamaCare over the next decade is projected at $1.2 trillion.

    In short, America’s highest-profile Democrats, including the leading contenders for the White House, have endorsed a climate agenda that will cost far more than ObamaCare. Yet not one of them or their green allies have provided a credible plan—meaning one that doesn’t include lots of nuclear energy—for achieving such draconian reductions without wrecking the economy. These Democrats can’t provide a scenario for achieving 80 by 50—a plan that is affordable and technically viable—for a simple reason: Such a scenario doesn’t exist.

  5. Dana says:

    Our resident climatastrophist will claim that the situation is dire, dire! and that we must spend that $5 trillion, but, in the end, it all has to come from consumers and taxpayers. That means that people, ordinary people, will have to live more poorly than they would have otherwise, to achieve a goal for which there will be no immediate, or even reasonably quick, return. When it comes to putting food on their tables and a roof over their heads, why people will just have to make do as best they can with what they have left.

    For the left elites, ’tisn’t that big a deal; one less pair of Christian Louboutins for the wife, perhaps, but she has enough shoes. For those of us who live paycheck-to-paycheck, well, things might be a bit different, and instead of losing a pair of Jimmy Choos, it’s something not normally regarded as a luxury. If the left actually understood the way the working class live, maybe they’d understand this.

  6. david7134 says:

    As usual you are wrong, every bit of the comment. But explain this, how is the depreciation allowance taken by oil any different from the depreciation allowance that your corporations takes. Your corporate activity is the same as the fuel industry.

  7. Dana says:

    Oh, I love depreciation! We bought our retirement home in Kentucky last year, but since we aren’t ready to retire yet, we’re renting it out. Not only do I get to deduct property maintenance, insurance and tax expenses from our rental income, I can also depreciate the house (not the land) over a five-year period. If the renters totally wreck the house, I can depreciate the full value, and collect the insurance, tax free, on the house which they destroyed.

    Then I can build a completely new house with the insurance proceeds. 🙂

  8. Jeffery says:


    My corporation is not causing global warming, and any damages my corporation inflicts on society, we will be responsible for. For example, if we have a drug approved by the FDA, and it turns out to be less safe once introduced to a million rather than 1000 patients, my corporation is responsible, not the taxpayers. If during the manufacture of a drug, a byproduct is dumped in the river, my corporation is responsible. That’s the way it should be, don’t you think?

    Not wanting to answer the question, “Who is responsible for global warming?” is what drives Deniers. In a real sense, we all are. And so are the fossil fuels companies.

  9. Jeffery says:


    Let’s see… $5 trillion spend over the next 35 years to replace damaging fossil fuels…

    A conservative estimate of US GDP over that period is $875 trillion… carry the 5… hmmm, that’s about 1/2% of total US output over that time.

    The dumbass writing for the WSJ assumes that cutting CO2 emissions over 35 years means reducing energy use the same amount. Maybe he’s not a dumbass, maybe he’s just a propagandist. The IEA, which Mr. Libertarian references, said: “The IEA’s latest estimates indicate that fossil-fuel consumption subsidies worldwide amounted to $548 billion in 2013”. If we round down to $0.5 trillion a year, and assume no increased subsidies, and ignore global warming, that amounts to $17.5 trillion in direct subsidies alone for fossil fuels AND global warming unabated.

    Which option seems like a better deal for humans on Earth?

    2050 having spent $5 trillion and with 80% less CO2 emissions, or 2050 having spent at least $17.5 trillion and more CO2 emissions?

    Even a libertarian should be able to make that call.

  10. drowningpuppies says:

    Misleading information as usual from the ‘lil one.

    * From 1977 through 2011, federal tax preferences per unit of primary energy production for:

    • renewables averaged $398 per billion BTUs.
    • fossil fuels averaged $81 per billion BTUs.
    • nuclear averaged $26 per billion BTUs.[928]

    A more truthful examination of subsidies, taxes,
    costs, etc. can be found at

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