Tom Borelli

In a recent post on Seeking Alpha – a financial website – John Mylant described how a carbon tax would benefit Exxon.

“There is strong competition between coal and natural gas to generate electricity. It's really simple-if coal costs more, natural gas will look more appealing.”

Mylant also said, “Some believe the carbon tax will be a knockout blow for the thermal coal industry and a boon for the natural gas industry. Thus, a huge revenue benefit to Exxon.”

The goal for progressive activists and Exxon is to eliminate the coal industry through government and not through free market competition.

The coal industry is already on the ropes because of President Obama’s war on coal. The Environmental Protection Agency has issued regulations that dramatically increase the cost of using coal for electricity generation and a proposed rule for greenhouse gases, if finalized, would in effect stop the construction of new coal-fired power plants.

A carbon tax would certainly devastate the domestic coal industry and eliminate competition for power generation.

If passed, Exxon and other natural gas producers would likely profit from a carbon tax but it would come at a great cost to hardworking Americans.

A carbon tax would raise the cost of energy harming manufacturing, domestic energy production and push jobs overseas.

Higher energy prices are regressive harming those least able to pay such as lower and fixed-income households.

These adverse consequences will not affect the environmental progressive elites such as Jones or negatively impact Tillerson, his leadership team and Exxon board members.

Exxon is not alone in seeking ways to reduce the use of carbon based energy by making it more expensive. Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell and more than 100 other corporations signed a policy statement supporting, “a clear, transparent and unambiguous price on carbon emissions

must be a core policy objective, as part of a broader policy framework.”

While Obama rejected the idea of a carbon tax during his first press conference following the election, he could easily initiate the plan if a coalition of progressives and Exxon would lead the way.

Recall Obama’s first attempt to tax fossil fuels through cap-and-trade failed. Executing a carbon tax in his second term would add to his big government and anti-free enterprise legacy.

Tom Borelli

Tom Borelli, Ph.D., is a Senior Fellow with FreedomWorks.

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