The recent In Focus column by Richard Badalamente asserted that facts told us that carbon taxes were not job killers. He cited a recent study that showed that a revenue-neutral carbon tax would reduce emissions by 33 percent by 2025 and add between 2 million and 3 million jobs.
The study proposes a revenue-neutral carbon tax that would be imposed on carbon fuels when they are extracted from the mine or well. This would result in higher prices to consumers for gasoline, natural gas, electricity, etc.
This study forecasts the biggest employment gains are in health care, retail and services, since the study posits that people would have more money to spend because the entire amount of the tax would be returned to households.
But this rebate is revenue-neutral to households. Households pay the tax by purchasing higher priced energy that was taxed at the source, so the rebate merely makes them whole. It doesn't increase the money they have to spend, it merely returns their money to them.
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Why wouldn't they spend the rebate on the next month's more expensive (because of the carbon tax) electric or fuel bill, rather than on more health care, retail and services?
TOM KELLEY, Richland