Support for Carbon Tax Soars When Tax Revenue Funds Renewable Energy
According to conventional wisdom, proposing a carbon tax to solve climate change would be a political anathema. But new research from the University of Michigan and Muhlenberg College suggests that a carbon tax might not be doomed to fail. What matters, it turns out, is where the revenue from the tax goes. While just 34% of Americans say they would support a carbon tax when no plan is specified for how the revenue would be used, almost twice as many (60%) say they would support a carbon tax with revenues that would fund renewable energy programs.
Greta Guest, Contributor to University of Michigan News
A carbon tax with revenues used to fund renewable energy programs gained support from 60 percent of Americans, according to a University of Michigan poll.
That’s the highest among tax options presented and one that crossed the political divide with majorities of Democrats, Republicans and Independents saying they would support the tax, according to the National Surveys on Energy and Environment.
The survey is a joint effort of the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy at U-M’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and the Muhlenberg Institute of Public Opinion at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pa.
“Conventional wisdom is that carbon tax is a political non-starter,” said Barry Rabe, U-M professor of public policy and director of the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy. “But there may be broader support for such a tax than is commonly believed, depending upon how revenues from that tax are used.”
Image credit: University of Michigan News