GOP utters the "T" word for dealing with carbon

Maybe it’s the threat of the EPA having say over carbon emissions, but all of the sudden lawmakers whose only position on climate change legislation was to “kill the bill” are starting to show signs of compromise, reports our colleague Jennifer Dhlouy.

“We need to dispense with this somewhat blind loyalty to economywide cap-and-trade,” said Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, one of a handful of Republicans who have signaled they might support a climate change bill. “We need to be encouraged to look to all of the alternatives, and, unfortunately, so many of them have just been kicked to the side with the discussion about cap-and-trade. We’ve kind-of boxed ourselves in.”

Among the ideas being considered by the GOP Senators:

• A “cap-and-dividend” where any more raised by auctioning off emissions credits would be directly paid back to tax payers, in theory neutralizing consumer costs.

• A simple carbon tax, which a number of energy executives have said they’d support over cap-and-trade, is also being floated.

The Brookings Institute this week repeated the “carbon tax is better than cap-and-trade” mantra, while the Financial Times notes another study that shows support climate change laws and support are cap-and-trade aren’t mutually exclusive.
“But wait!” you say. “Haven’t they heard about ‘Climategate‘?'”
Yes, there are going to be investigations into the now infamous e-mails stolen from a group of climate scientists that seem to indicate they manipulated data to support their prior findings.
But it’s pretty clear the current EPA administrator and the White House aren’t changing their minds on manmade climate change.