Tuesday, November 14, 2006

First Carbon Tax in U.S. Approved

This should make former Vice President Al Gore happy, there is now a carbon tax in a U.S. municipality. Gore has been advocating such a tax and lo and behold a report from Reuters says that the voters in Boulder, Colorado, the home of the University of Colorado and the National Center for Atmospheric Research, have approved such a tax which is based on how much electricity is used. Most of the electricity in Boulder comes from coal-fired plants. The tax is waived for residents who choose to get their electricity from wind power. The revenue generated by the tax will be used for home and business energy audits and for giving homeowners expert advice on how to improve energy efficiency. If people take advantage of the advice they receive they should save money in the long run and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. According to Boulder Mayor Mark Ruzzin as quoted in USA Today, “The City Council authorized the ballot measure to fund a city plan to reduce greenhouse emissions 7% below 1990 levels. To accomplish that, Boulder would have to cut emissions 24% by 2012. About half of the city's emissions are attributed to burning fossil fuels for electricity.” Perhaps the passage of the measure can be to some extent explained by the Mayor’s observation that “We have probably more climate scientists living in Boulder than any other city in the world.”

No comments: