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Carbon fees are our payback to ourselves [Letter]

Regarding Bob Bruninga's recent letter, "Carbon fees are a payback to Mother Nature (Aug. 19), carbon fees can also be payback to us, which would make them much more realistic politically.

Rather than having the government tax fossil fuel corporations, which then pass the cost on to consumers, let's have a carbon pollution fee paid by fossil fuel companies and rebated monthly to every American. Taxpayers have already shelled out over $1 trillion for climate change disasters caused by carbon emissions, so fossil fuels owe us, big time.

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A revenue-neutral carbon fee would also be good for Mother Nature because as the carbon tax increases every year people will naturally use their carbon rebate money to buy cheaper clean energy, while phasing out fossil fuels.

Moreover, a fee on imports from carbon polluters like China will lead to dramatic cuts in global emissions enough to avert the "catastrophic" climate change the latest IPCC report warns about. It also will make U.S. products more affordable.

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A recent REMI economic study says most people will come out ahead on the monthly rebate, especially low- and middle-income Americans, and the plan would create 2.8. million net jobs and increase GDP by up to $80 billion annually by 2025.

British Columbia has had a rebated carbon fee for five years and it has dramatically reduced emissions as its economy has thrived.

This plan is supported by economists across the political spectrum, including eight Nobel Prize winners, and it uses conservative economics, not government regulations, so there is hope of bipartisan support. But Congress needs to hear from constituents that they want such a plan in order for lawmakers to act.

Lynn Goldfarb, Lancaster, Pa.

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To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

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