The Four Pillars of the Carbon Dividends Plan


We need a climate solution that rapidly lowers carbon emissions, invests all Americans in a clean energy future, and holds other countries accountable. With the Climate Leadership Council’s carbon dividends plan, we can unite both parties behind a lasting solution.

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A gradually rising carbon fee

Charge fossil fuel companies a fee for their carbon emissions. This will cut U.S. carbon emissions in half by 2035.

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Carbon dividends for all Americans

Put all the net revenue from the carbon fee back into the pockets of the American people. A family of four will receive about $2,000 a year.

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Simplify
regulations

Remove redundant carbon regulations so businesses can innovate the fuels and technologies of the future.

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A border carbon adjustment

Charge a similar fee on foreign goods at the border, encouraging other countries to do their part while strengthening the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing.

Why this solution will work.

A nationwide carbon fee is the most powerful tool we have to rapidly slash carbon emissions. Once passed into law, it will encourage clean energy investments across the economy. Entrepreneurs will innovate to meet the demand for low-carbon solutions. Carbon emissions will quickly fall, and measures of other air pollutants will improve. If emissions reductions don’t happen fast enough, an emissions assurance mechanism will kick in to keep us on track.

This plan also recognizes the global nature of the climate problem. Its system of border carbon adjustments will encourage other countries to adopt similar policies and ensure America isn’t reducing emissions at home while encouraging their growth overseas.

Why this solution is fair.

This plan will position all people to succeed as we transition to a low-carbon economy. It centers on the most cost-effective way to reduce emissions: a nationwide carbon fee. By returning all the revenue netted from the carbon fee to households, this plan ensures the clean energy future belongs to everyone.

At the same time, this plan will reinvigorate U.S. manufacturing. American industries are some of the world’s most carbon-efficient, but our manufacturers don’t get any credit for their cleaner operations. A system of border carbon adjustments corrects this by charging a fee on imports at the border. A nationwide carbon fee will also drive further efficiency gains in the manufacturing sector and encourage the return of important supply chains back home. These are key objectives if we want to create better opportunities for American workers.

Why this solution will last.

History has shown that policies that are enacted with broad support are far more likely to stand the test of time. And to solve climate change, we need a solution that reduces emissions over the long haul. This plan has united an unprecedented coalition of businesses and environmentalists, Republicans and Democrats, and economists from the right and left. At the same time, the carbon dividends solution is consistently popular with voters on both sides of the aisle.

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