Kerry-Lieberman Cap and Trade Bill: What You Should Know

Ok, full disclosure:  I didn’t know about this bill before today.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, I knew about cap and trade.  I just wasn’t aware of the details of this particular bill.  But when former YAL staffer Jeff Hubbard sent me this information for the YAL blog, I pretty quickly determined that it was important to both know and share.  Here are the key findings of a recent study on the Kerry-Leirberman Cap and Trade bill, known as the American Power Act:

  • The American Power Act would reduce U.S. employment by roughly 522,000 jobs in 2015, rising to over 5.1 million jobs by 2050.
  • Households would face a gross annual burden of $125.9 billion per year or $1,042 per household, with costs disproportionately borne by low-income households.
  • On a net basis, the top income quintile will benefit financially, redistributing to these households roughly $12.3 billion per year from the bottom 80 percent of earners.
  • Households over age 75 bear the largest burden at 2.3 percent of income, followed by households aged 65-74 and under age 25 at 2.1 percent. By contrast, the nation’s highest-earning households between age 45 and 54 years would bear the smallest percentage burden of just 1.5 percent.
  • Contrary to the legislation’s stated goal of reducing price volatility by excluding petroleum refiners from quarterly auctions, the Kerry-Lieberman bill is likely to significantly increase allowance price volatility from quarter to quarter, compared to an ordinary auction in which all covered industries bid for allowances.

So basically, this bill is projected to cause fewer jobs, higher taxes, gain for the richest, higher losses for the oldest and youngest Americans who are most likely to be financially struggling, and more jumps in gas prices.

I’ve got to say, I’m impressed.  If we could do the reverse of everything these senators recommend, we’d have a d@mn fine government.

Cross-posted at my own blog here.

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