Majority in U.S. Support Revenue-Neutral Carbon Tax, Survey Says

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A majority of Americans across the political spectrum support policies that reduce carbon emissions, including a revenue-neutral carbon tax, according to a new survey by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication.

In a survey conducted between Oct. 20 and Nov. 6, 65 percent of respondents said they would support a revenue-neutral carbon tax to help “create jobs and decrease pollution” — including 51 percent of those identifying themselves as Republicans, 69 percent of independents, and 77 percent of Democrats.

Sixty percent said they would support a $10-per-ton carbon tax if the money was spent reducing federal income taxes. That support continued even when respondents were told the carbon tax would “slightly increase the cost of many things you buy, including food, clothing, and electricity.”

Support for the tax dipped to 49 percent if the revenue was instead returned to each family as an annual check, and to just 44 percent if it was spent paying down the national debt.

Sixty-nine percent said they oppose federal subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, while 54 percent opposed ethanol subsidies. Since May, there has been a 9 percent decline among those expressing “strong support” for renewable energy research.

Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.

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Yale Environment 360 is an online magazine offering opinion, analysis, reporting and debate on global environmental issues. We feature original articles by scientists, journalists, environmentalists, academics, policy makers, and business people, as well as multimedia content and a daily digest of major environmental news. Yale Environment 360 is published by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale University. We are funded in part by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The opinions and views expressed in Yale Environment 360 are those of the authors and not of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies or of Yale University.

2 Comments

  1. Please correct me if I’m wrong, but returning the revenue from a carbon tax in the form of a deduction on federal income taxes would create an incentive to pollute more – the more a person or corporation pollutes/emits, the bigger the deduction they receive, yes?

  2. Pingback: The jobs argument « Ashley Coale

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