Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Brian Schatz (D-HI) introduced the American Opportunity Carbon Fee Act, S.1548, on June 10, 2015 to reduce U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through a carbon tax. Parties subject to the tax would include those that mine, extract or import fossil fuels, large emitters of non-fossil-fuel-based GHGs and the producers and importers of high global warming potential industrial gasses. The bill would require them to pay $45 per metric ton of carbon dioxide (CO2) starting in 2016. The fee would increase annually by two percent in additional to annual adjustments for inflation. Senators Whitehouse and Schatz estimate that the tax could raise $2 trillion in revenue over ten years and reduce U.S. CO2 emissions by more than 40 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Funds raised by the tax could be spent to support reductions in the top marginal corporate income tax rate, refundable tax credits to help offset payroll taxes, additional benefits for Social Security and veterans’ program beneficiaries and transitional job assistance for low income workers.
June 10, 2015 – Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Brian Schatz (D-HI) introduced the American Opportunity Carbon Fee Act of 2015.