A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Teresa Werner: Northern Kentucky climate advocates applaud bill to price carbon

The Northern Kentucky Chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby applauds the reintroduction of the bipartisan Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act in the U.S. House of Representatives.

This groundbreaking bipartisan climate solution to price carbon will give revenue to households and bring greenhouse gas emission down 90 percent by 2050.

Sponsored by a bipartisan group of seven House members, the bill will create over 2 million new jobs, lower health care costs and promote energy innovation.

This policy puts a fee on fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas. It starts low, at $15 per ton, and grows $10 per ton each year. The money collected from the carbon fee is allocated in equal shares every month to the American people to spend as they see fit.

Click here to learn how this climate change legislation works and access the official legislative text of the bill.

“This bill provides a common sense approach to solving climate change that’s a win-win,” said Jim Vogt, group leader for the NKY Chapter of CCL. “It establishes a price on carbon that will drive down greenhouse gas emissions, and by giving the revenue to households it protects people from any price increases associated with the fee.”

The impact of climate change is starting to be felt in Kentucky.

“Global warming is expected to increasingly affect Kentucky agriculture in the next 20 to 30 years” states the University of Kentucky School of Agriculture. For our area, rising temperatures, extreme heat, drought, and heavy downpours are expected to increasingly disrupt agricultural productivity and affect water supplies.

“The Energy Innovation Act is a critical first step to contain the effects of climate change and preserve a livable world for our children and grandchildren,” said Jim Vogt.

With Congress divided between a Republican-controlled Senate and a Democratic-controlled House, enacting any climate change solution requires a bipartisan approach.

“We hope Representative Massie will cosponsor this bipartisan bill,” said Jim Vogt. In reaching across the aisle with this legislation, he can demonstrate the kind of leadership and cooperation that’s needed to solve the big problems facing our nation.”

Teresa Werner of Villa Hills is a member of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby, a nonpartisan nonprofit advocacy group with 100,000 members across the U.S. and with chapters in NKY, Lexington, Louisville and Cincinnati.

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  1. Jan Freed says:

    Good letter! There is no debate among published climate scientists! Why even bother with the paid deniers and front groups who thrive by creating the delay of a false climate debate?

    Consider a revenue neutral carbon fee but with a 100% dividend, It must be part of the Green New Deal.
    Conservative and liberal economists (including dozens of Nobels) say it is the best way to create healthy pollution free communities and limit climate change. It is not a tax. This way citizens would RECEIVE the carbon fees as a monthly check, for example. That would protect us from price spikes in dirty energy.

    Polluters PAY the fees, so it holds fossil fuel corporations responsible for the damages. or “externalities”, they cause, hundreds of billions of dollars per year (Harvard School of Medicine).
    It would more rapidly limit further pollution than by regulations alone, as happened in BC Canada with a similar, popular policy. BC lowered emissions and also lowered taxes with their fees.

    A study by respected non-partisan Regional Economic Modeling, Inc. found the dividends would help to create 2.9 million additional jobs in 20 years, while reducing carbon emissions 50% in that time, as fees stimulate low carbon technologies . http://citizensclimatelobby.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/REMI-National-SUMMARY.pdf

    To those who reject the science: perhaps nothing will change your mind. But what have you got against cleaner air, less asthma in our kids, fewer heart attacks, and more money (the dividend) in your pockets?

    Elon Musk was asked “what can we do? ” Musk: “I would say whenever you have the opportunity, talk to the politicians.,,,,. We have to fix the unpriced externality [social cost]. I would talk to your friends about it and fight the propaganda from the carbon industry.”

    • Nancy Lenin says:

      Human caused climate change is a complete and proven myth, look up the non biased science. People have cried wolf for far too many years on climate change having a legit affect on the world. The climate has been rapidly changing over the course of planet earth, humans are “changing” it at a single percentage fraction. If you eliminated all carbon emissions tomorrow the climate would continue to change at basically it’s present pace.
      The sea levels were supposed to rise multiple feet by now according to your “science”, 80% of the polar ice caps were supposed to be melted by now according to your “science”.

      You have unfortunately been fooled, or you’re simply careless because you haven’t worked in the private sector. All it is , is a tax, regulation, and big time business. There are so many greedy and selfish people making millions off climate change and it’s sick. They publish this fake science and give bogus speeches for hundreds of thousands of dollars.

      Both sides of the aisle have publicly laughed at the “green dream deal” thing. You’re point is literally psychotic and will create so much poverty, hunger, disease, and suffering for everyone. Please gain an education before making such comments.
      The logic behind giving the finds to people is so flawed. So a business (it’ll be small businesses getting screwed, big business won’t pay a dime) is going to get taxed on carbon, so they rise their prices by a lot, then random people get a few dollars a month that doesn’t match the increase in business prices. Move to Venezuela; they have been living the green deal for years and will be living in the green deal for years to come. Please do your research and grow up.

    • Amanda Krag says:

      For every carbon emission eliminated in the united states, new and equal carbon emissions are created in china, most other parts of asia, india, africa, mexico, south america, russia, etc. etc.
      The demand for products are going to remain constant for the most part worldwide. The carbon output to the world as a whole isn’t going to change, the means of production and carbon emissions are simply swapped from one country to another. 1/2 of the reason everything we buy is made in china is due to the fact they have super cheap labor, the other 1/2 of the reason is that they have literally no environmental regulations; hence, their stuff is super cheap, we don’t have slave labor here and we get destroyed by the EPA thinks you have a drip of bleach on the ground. China’s economy is going to quickly surpass the united states’ and they’re going to put copious amounts of CO2 out without a second thought.

      The countries that pick up our (foolishly given away) production and factories will not abide by a single environmental regulation and they’ll probably start buying coal from us to ramp theirs up. And no, there’s not going to be some magical accord that makes them eliminate their emissions as well, they won’t care because they’ll be making so much money off it that any sanctions on our end would be ineffective, especially due to the fact with a nose diving economy due to a green agenda will greatly lessen basic power and influence we have over the world.

      You can have a “green country” here but that only equals dozens non green countries over there. We will not shoot ourselves in the foot over this. The corporations own Washington DC anyways. They do a great job putting up a facade that they’re green and are trying to change, but they’re pumping away with that CO2 for generations to come.


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