By Rob Roper
Advocates for the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI) will argue that the pain they intend to inflict on Vermonters via a 17 cents per gallon carbon tax on gasoline and diesel is necessary to combat climate change. Their theory is by making gas and diesel too expensive for people to afford, people will be forced to find alternatives or give up driving, and this will, in turn, lower Vermont’s carbon footprint and stave off climate change.
But by how much?
According TCI’s own data, if the New England/Mid-Atlantic states considering this pact did not join TCI and pay the carbon tax, carbon emissions would still drop by a projected 19 percent. If the states did sign on to TCI and pay the carbon tax, those emissions would drop to somewhere between 20 and 25 percent. That’s only a 1-to-6 percent difference over the course of a decade (2022-2032).
And what would that very minor deviation cost?
The 1 percent impact option (7 cents per gallon), again according to TCI, will cost people in the region $1.4 billion annually, or $14 billion over that 10 years. The 6 percent impact option (17 cents per gallon) will cost drivers $56 billion.
The biggest question, of course, is what impact on future climate trends would moving the needle from a 19 percent CO2 reduction to 26 percent in these dozen states at the staggering cost of a $56 billion carbon tax have? So little as to be imperceptible.
TCI isn’t so much an actual public policy with meaningful goals achieved at reasonable costs — a well thought out and careful use of the public’s dollars for the public’s benefit — as it is a form of mass torture inflicted on the heretical population by the high priests of climate change. No thanks.