ON SATURDAY, Nelson became the 34th town in New Hampshire to pass a warrant article asking Congress to use Cash-Back Carbon Pricing to address the risks of our climate pollution.
This project began two years ago as a grassroots effort to inform people about a terrific first step we can take to rapidly reduce climate pollution in the United States and around the world. Voters like this approach because it will put us on a path to net zero emissions by 2050, give us affordable clean energy, save lives, and put money in people’s pockets.
Locally, this solution will give New Hampshire affordable clean energy and energy independence. We will be able to produce our own power, ending our reliance on other states and countries for our fuel. And we’ll be able to manufacture the energy solutions that other states and countries can use for their energy.
Carbon Cash-Back puts a price on climate pollution by imposing a steadily increasing fee on fossil fuel producers and importers based on the carbon content of their products. All the money collected (net) is rebated to all Americans on an equal per capita basis.
Of all the carbon pricing options, this cash-back approach benefits citizens the most. People will receive more money in their monthly cash-back dividend than they pay in trickle-down higher prices. Low income households will disproportionately benefit due to lower-consumption, with 96% of the poorest one-fifth of households coming out ahead.
An important part of Cash-Back Carbon Pricing is Border Carbon Adjustments, with which we can put our carbon price on imports (and rebate our exporters) in trade with countries that do not have a matching carbon price. This keeps United States businesses competitive against free-polluting international competition, ensuring that countries like India and China cannot free ride on climate pollution. Border Carbon Adjustments will encourage other countries to match our carbon price, as we need for our own climate safety.
As carbon pricing continues to gain popularity globally, other countries will increasingly use Border Carbon Adjustments on us. The EU has decided to impose Border Carbon Adjustments starting in 2023, and Canada and the UK are considering doing so also. If we do not price carbon, we will have to pay those other countries for our free pollution.
This solution is great for New Hampshire. Why hasn’t Cash-Back Carbon Pricing happened already? Citizens are the ones that benefit most, so it is up to us to ask Congress to take action. Please call Congress and ask them to put a Cash-Back price on carbon with the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act.
Representative Ann Kuster is already a cosponsor; so if you call her office, thank her for showing political courage and making our best interests a priority. Ask your senators to talk to their Republican colleagues about Cash-Back Carbon Pricing, because members of both parties do like this solution, and we need bipartisan support to pass effective and durable legislation in Congress. To learn more and get your town involved, please visit CarbonCashBack.org.