Want to Balance the Budget? Price Carbon, Tax Oil.
Despite all the talk in Congress about the need to balance the budget, there's a serious dearth of new ideas about how it might actually be done. The Center for American Progress's budget proposal suggests pricing carbon and placing a tax on imported foreign oil could go a long ways in doing exactly that:
Our plan addresses the risks and economic damage from our heavy reliance on foreign oil and the dangers of climate change by establishing a price on emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, and introducing an oil-import fee of $5 per barrel. Under our plan, greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by 42 percent of 2005 levels by 2030, and 83 percent of 2005 levels by 2050. For low- and middle-income taxpayers, any resulting rises in energy prices are offset by the benefits of reduced income taxes.
Read the entire proposal at CAP.