Saturday, February 06, 2016

Climate Economists React to Obama’s Proposed Oil Tax

The 5-year cost of a barrel of crude oil. (Credit: Bloomberg Business) Click to Enlarge.
On Thursday, President Obama dropped a surprise in his transportation plan as part of his annual budget.  The plan — dubbed the 21st Century Clean Transportation System — calls for $300 billion in investments over the next decade in high speed rail, driverless cars and mass transit across the U.S.

That would cut down on carbon pollution and could help the U.S. meet its 10-year climate goal of reducing carbon emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels.

That Obama wants to reduce transportation emissions is no surprise.  Twenty-seven percent of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions are due to transportation, second only to electricity generation as the main source of emissions.

The surprise, though, is how he wants to pay for it.  The $300 billion would come via a “fee” of $10 per a barrel of oil, phased in over five years.  According to CNN, it would apply to both domestic and imported oil used in the U.S. but not exports.  That translates to roughly an extra 25 cents tacked onto a gallon of gas if oil companies decided to pass the cost onto consumers.

Read more at Climate Economists React to Obama’s Proposed Oil Tax

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