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For Immediate Release

Contact

Peter Hart, phart@fwwatch.org

Press Release

Groups Urge Congress to Reject Carbon Tax in Reconciliation Bill

Ending wasteful oil and gas subsidies would be a better way to pay for infrastructure.
WASHINGTON -

Leading climate, environmental justice and grassroots activist groups released a letter to top Senate and House Democrats urging them to reject last-minute efforts to include a carbon tax in the Build Back Better infrastructure proposal.

 The groups – Climate Justice Alliance, Food & Water Watch, Indigenous Environmental Network, Our Revolution, and Progressive Democrats of America – argue that carbon taxes only serve to deepen our dependence on fossil fuels by linking revenue from pollution to ongoing government services. The letter also points out that the costs associated with such a tax will ultimately be paid by working people, which would violate President Biden’s pledge not to raise taxes on households making less than $400,000.

“Carbon taxes have fallen out of serious climate discussions for good reasons: They do not reduce emissions, they put a squeeze on working families, and they are embraced by polluters as a ploy to look concerned about climate while continuing business as usual,” said Food & Water Watch Policy Director Mitch Jones. “As if that record isn’t bad enough, adding a carbon tax as a last minute revenue raiser in the spending bill would only make our economy more dependent on dirty fossil fuels. If lawmakers are really concerned about holding the costs of this spending bill, they should get rid of the billions of dollars we waste every year on subsidies to polluters.”

Carbon taxes have gained popularity among fossil fuel companies in recent years. In lieu of strong policies that would mandate pollution reductions, a small tax would allow corporations to largely maintain the status quo.

As the letter states, “the inclusion of a carbon tax would create an inequitable, discriminatory, ineffective and ultimately regressive proposal that gives a green light for the biggest climate scofflaws to pay to pollute and maintain a harmful status quo. We urge you to oppose a carbon tax and instead pursue other revenue streams to pay for critical infrastructure, such as eliminating fossil fuel subsidies.”

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Food & Water Watch mobilizes regular people to build political power to move bold and uncompromised solutions to the most pressing food, water, and climate problems of our time. We work to protect people’s health, communities, and democracy from the growing destructive power of the most powerful economic interests.

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