By Nick Loris.
The idea behind cap and trade is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by putting a price on the right to emit carbon and other greenhouse gases on businesses. Because fossil fuels emit carbon dioxide, cap and trade becomes a costly tax on fossil fuels and the energy they generate. Since 85 percent of America’s energy needs come from fossil fuels, cap and trade would be massive tax on energy consumption if enacted. How high of a tax?
The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis found that by 2035 gasoline prices would increase 58 percent, natural gas prices would increase 55 percent, home heating oil would increase 56 percent, and worst of all, electricity prices would jump 90 percent.
But the direct tax on household energy use is just the beginning. The energy tax also hits producers. As the higher production costs ripple through the economy the household pocketbooks get hit again and again. When all the tax impacts have been added up, the average per-family-of-four costs rise by $2,979 per year. In the year 2035 alone the cost is $4,609. And the costs per family for the whole energy tax aggregated from 2012 to 2035 are $71,493.
But just about everything we produce uses energy. As energy prices increase, those costs will be passed onto the consumer and reflected in the higher prices we pay for products. Higher energy prices also result in a slower economy which means less production, higher unemployment and reduced income.
• Over the 2012-2030 timeline, job losses overage over 1.1 million. By 2035, a projected 2.5 million jobs are lost below the baseline (without a cap and trade bill).
• The average Gross Domestic Product (GDP) lost is $491 billion, hitting a high of $662 billion in 2035. From 2012-2035, the accumulated GDP lost is $9.4 trillion.
• The negative economic impacts accumulate, and the national debt is no exception. The increase in family of four debt solely because of Waxman-Markey hits an almost unbelievable $114,915 by 2035.
• The average of the climate tax revenue, what the government gets to spend or give away, is $236 billion from 2012 through 2035 and adds up to $5.7 trillion in tax collections.
In the name of saving our planet from “catastrophic global warming” for future generations, what we’re really doing is ensuring they live in a world with less opportunity and are paying for our mistakes through increased debt, all for a change in the temperature too small to ever notice. All of these costs accrue in the first 25 years of a 90-year program that, as calculated by climatologists, will lower temperatures by only hundredths of a degree in 2050 and no more than two-tenths of a degree at the end of the century.
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