Letter: Carbon tax downside

May 21, 2014 

Response to Tri-City Herald article "Now is the time to go low-carbon energy" by Amonette and Ghan (In Focus, May 18).

Per the reference article we can still avoid catastrophic climate change with a tax on fossil fuels. It would be revenue-neutral (a big word, must be a good thing) and give a dividend ($650 first year).

So, I get money, I help save the earth, and I have assurance from experts that this is all needed. What's not to like about this? Maybe three things:

1. Each household will pay at least $1,000 more annually in electricity costs. In addition the cost of almost everything will also go up a lot. This doesn't sound too revenue neutral.

2. Eventually there will be a U.N. global carbon tax since climate change happens globally. The world wants the 1 percent (richest households) to pay their fair share. Unfortunately for Americans, on a global scale a U.S. wage earner making more than $40,000/year will now be in the 1 percent.

3. As stated in the latest IPCC report, the climate models are "tuned" to give correct answers. This tuning, which may appear appropriate for model benchmarking, can lead to erroneous results for projections into the future. Hence, the whole basis for assuming man-made CO2 is the climate driver is shaky at best. As Mark Twain stated, "It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.' ''

CRAIG BROWN, Richland

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