Letter: Tax has no effect on carbon output
To the Editor:
An editorial piece in the Bennington Banner a couple of days ago was authored by a fellow named "Bruce L." It was titled "Vermont must act on carbon." The opening paragraph begins with insults directed at the positions and character of a VTDigger commentary author "John McClaughry" John McClaughry is the vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Bruce goes on to state that Mr. McClaughry is spending most of his time "deriding the possibility of the carbon tax," and that this is because it is "so logical a solution, that John simply misses it." I disagree.
I submit that Mr. McClaughry hasn't missed the mark, and to show this I'd refer Vermont readers to the "VTDdigger" commentary by Skyler Bailey, titled "Surprising findings on carbon tax effect in Europe."
The surprising findings are this: carbon tax schemes historically do not lower carbon dioxide output. They just don't. As Mr. Bailey states, Germany allowed the carbon tax to take full effect in 2003 and has claimed to have caused a 7.5 percent decrease in per capita greenhouse gas emissions in the 10 years following. Amazing right? Wrong. The truth is that Germany experienced a 21.2 percent decrease in carbon dioxide output during the decade prior to the implementation of said carbon tax.
That's only one anecdotal scenario, right? Wrong again. Mr. Bailey goes further by presenting verified references. that show the United Kingdom, Ireland and France have also presented a historical record of more rapidly decreasing of carbon dioxide levels before the carbon tax was implemented. He further notes that Norway and Iceland saw zero noticeable difference in CO2 levels post implementation of this tax. Latvia and Estonia have had rising emissions since they put their carbon tax in place.
In reality, there isn't an example of a carbon tax scheme working at all. There just isn't. And as Mr. Bailey points out in his closing paragraph, "There is strong evidence suggesting that instituting carbon pricing may instead cut in half the effect of all future initiatives to decrease Vermont's greenhouse gas emissions."
Bruce L. goes on to say that Vermont is not alone in its increased carbon dioxide levels and that there are similar carbon tax schemes already in place in California. He should note that California is the second largest CO2 emitting state in the country, at about 455 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year, and Vermont produces the least in the country at 7.1 metric tons. Additionally, Vermont is also known to produce only .01 percent of the United States' overall greenhouse gas emissions.
We just can't afford extreme solutions to non-imminent issues. We should be rewarded by this fact, not punished / or incentivized.
Please also Join us with on Saturday, March 23 at the Statehouse. We will don our yellow vests for visibility and protest the carbon tax lobby and legislators.
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