Massachusetts Mulls an Economy-Wide Price on Carbon

Massachusetts Mulls an Economy-Wide Price on Carbon

One of six states considering carbon pricing to combat climate change, Massachusetts weighs two bills that could make the state a trendsetter.

 

“We have to step up our fight against climate change,” Massachusetts state Sen. Michael Barrett told a packed committee hearing in Boston on Tuesday. Barrett’s solution: put a price on carbon.

Barrett laid out his plan in Senate Bill S.1747, one of two carbon price options before the legislature. Massachusetts joins five other states—Connecticut, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington—with proposed legislation exploring this option for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Although the idea of a carbon price is not new, it is increasingly seen as a key climate solution in the leadup to the U.N. climate talks in Paris in December. Six major oil and gas companies, including BP, Shell and Statoil, have said they support carbon pricing. In recent weeks, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg voiced support for a global price on carbon. So have the heads of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, along with many global leaders in business and politics.

 

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