August 10, 2002
10:54 PM   Subscribe

The Sky Trust would sell a gradually diminishing number of carbon emission permits to the approximately 2,000 oil, gas and coal companies that bring fossil fuels into the U.S. economy. With the income from these sales, the Sky Trust would pay equal yearly dividends to every American.

An interesting idea, but it seems like any group that plans to ask congress for a charter so they can control the sky would need to think things out a little more. Would auto manufacturers be charged for the emissions made by the vehicles they produce? Would the private citizens who buy them? And what is to stop any corporation from simply, say, opening shop in another country to avoid the hassles. But, the largest question in my mind was, who actually expects the current government to do anything that would place environmental matters over commerce?
posted by Kellydamnit (2 comments total)
I like the idea, personally. It's essentially a carbon fee, but with the revenues coming back to regular folks, thus reducing the potentially regressive nature of an energy tax.

You wouldn't need to charge automakers or citizens if you're charging gas, oil and coal companies, as pretty much all the carbon released in the creation of energy comes from those three sources. As I read their proposal, it would be a single fee at the source. Doubtless, those costs - and an extra little bit to gauge us further - would get passed on to us as consumers, but those of us burn less coal, oil and gas (directly or indirectly) would pay less under this scheme.

That said, I think it has a rat's ass chance of getting through congress - and then I can't imagine a president who's owned lock, stock and barrel by Big Oil *not* vetoing it.

You'd almost need to pass real campaign finance reform, first.
posted by AlexSteffen at 11:22 PM on August 10, 2002 [1 favorite]

You'd almost need to pass real campaign finance reform, first.

exactly... good luck with that. :/
posted by rhyax at 11:41 PM on August 10, 2002

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