Business Leaders Urge Senators to Adopt Carbon Dividends During Virtual Fly-in

April 14, 2021
WASHINGTON, DC – The Climate Leadership Council has organized a series of meetings with senators and top executives from its Founding Member coalition to discuss why carbon dividends are the climate solution for our time. CEO Climate Action Days meetings are taking place with more than a dozen Democratic and Republican senators this week.

“Nothing would spur greater innovation in clean-energy technologies than an economy-wide price on carbon,” said Curt Morgan, president, and CEO of Vistra Corp, who is attending the meetings. “We can leverage this essential tool to lower emissions without singling out industries or hurting the wallets of everyday Americans through the Council’s dividend solution. In addition, we can protect the international competitiveness of American businesses and incentivize other countries to decarbonize through a border carbon adjustment.”

Other business leaders from all sectors of the Council’s broad coalition are participating in the meetings, including top executives from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, ConocoPhillips, Exelon Corporation, ExxonMobil, Ford Motor Company, GM, Hannon Armstrong, IBM, Procter & Gamble, and others. They are making the case for carbon dividends in four key areas:

  • Carbon pricing is an essential component of any climate solution.
    Carbon dividends work quickly, cutting U.S. carbon emissions in half by 2035 and putting America on track to achieve net-zero emissions by midcentury.
  • The vast majority of Americans come out financially ahead.
    Returning carbon fee revenue to households invests all Americans in a clean energy future and more than offsets any cost increases for most.
  • Enhances U.S. competitiveness.
    The border carbon adjustment holds other countries accountable for their emissions while rewarding US operating businesses that are already some of the cleanest in the world.
  • Leverages private sector investment.
    Carbon dividends pay for themselves by incentivizing massive investments by the private sector in lower-carbon technologies. It is a budget-neutral climate solution.

“Business leaders are committed to addressing our climate challenge, and the consensus among them is that a carbon price is a central part of the solution, said Greg Bertelsen, CEO of the Climate Leadership Council. “No other climate policy will go further in lowering emissions, stimulating innovation across the economy, boosting American competitiveness and supporting families than carbon dividends.”

Additional quotes from executives who are attending the meetings:


“ConocoPhillips supports a carbon dividends plan that includes four key pillars – a gradually increasing carbon fee, carbon dividends for all Americans, border carbon adjustments, and regulatory simplification. These pillars align with our company’s view that a well-designed price on carbon is the most effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the economy.”

Matt Fox, executive vice president and COO, ConocoPhillips


“The United States is locked in a global race to own the future of clean energy, and that’s a race we can win if we employ sound economic policies that incentivize investment in new and existing clean energy technologies. As the nation’s largest producer of zero-carbon energy, Exelon has long advocated for a market-based, age and technology-neutral approach that will spur innovation and speed the transition to a clean energy future while benefiting consumers, jobs, and national security. The bipartisan carbon dividends proposal offers a path forward that protects the competitiveness of our economy while giving industry the support it needs to pursue bold solutions to the climate crisis.”

Chris Crane, president and CEO, Exelon Corporation


“The U.S. is at the precipice of an electric vehicle revolution that requires support from the private sector and all levels of government. The Climate Leadership Council’s sector-wide approach to carbon emissions reductions complements Ford’s more than $22 billion investment to deliver high-quality, high-performance vehicles and a zero-emissions future for our customers.”

Mitch Bainwol, chief government relations officer, Ford Motor Company


“General Motors has a vision for a world with zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion. To achieve that vision, we are committed to an all-electric future and plan to be carbon neutral in our global products and operations by 2040. We will invest $27 billion in electric and autonomous vehicle development by 2025 and will offer 30 new EVs globally in the same year. We have long acknowledged that climate change is real and that lowering emissions is both a social imperative and an economic
opportunity. In that context, placing a value on carbon would be an important step towards a goal of net-zero emissions and making our vision a reality.”

Everett Eissenstat, senior vice president of global public policy, General Motors


“To achieve deep decarbonization this decade and net-zero emissions by mid-century, we need a durable climate policy solution that reduces carbon pollution across the entire economy, not just the electricity sector. Carbon dividends will lead to massive private sector investments in sustainable infrastructure, create millions of good-paying jobs, protect low- and middle-income families from cost increases, and keep American businesses competitive on the world stage. While no single policy is a panacea, a carbon fee and dividends program is the most impactful, efficient, and equitable solution to finally turn the tide on our climate and pollution crisis. We urge lawmakers to incorporate this business, science, and health leaders-backed policy into the infrastructure package currently under deliberation.”

Jeffrey W. Eckel, chairman and CEO, Hannon Armstrong


“IBM has committed to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2030, and our corporate emissions cuts are on track to exceed the Paris Agreement goals. But we also need governments to take steps to protect this planet for future generations.
“That’s why IBM supports putting a price on carbon. The carbon tax plan is a unique opportunity for policymakers to cut emissions through market-based incentives that work for both the environment and the economy.”

Jim Whitehurst, president, IBM


“We live in a defining decade to impact the course of climate change and we must act now. The Climate Leadership Council framework is a win-win for Americans as it empowers everyone to do their part to conserve energy and incentivizes businesses to innovate and adopt cleaner energy sources. At P&G, we have committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in our operations and to be carbon neutral for the decade by 2030, but we will go beyond that. We recently set goals for our brands to decrease their carbon footprint across the full value chain. Such is the case of America’s #1 trusted laundry detergent Tide, which aims at making cold wash cycles the industry standard. Over two-thirds of the emissions in the laundry, lifecycle comes from washing clothes at home. Switching from hot to cold water reduces energy use by up to 90% and can save Americans up to $150 a year in electricity costs with no tradeoffs in cleaning performance.”

Shailesh Jejurikar, CEO of fabric and home care, Procter & Gamble

The Climate Leadership Council represents a diverse coalition of businesses, environmental, and opinion leaders whose purpose is to advance the four-part carbon dividends framework as the most cost-effective, equitable, and politically-viable climate solution.