Over a dozen Maine Legislators have signed on to the Carbon Tax bill (LD 434) that raises taxes on 90% of the energy products that Maine people use. The tax starts at $65 million and would ultimately be around $600 million per year. Why the big tax? To make heating oil, natural gas, propane, kerosene, diesel fuel, gasoline unaffordable, so people use less. Will the tax actually do anything to save the planet?

 

They call CO2 which is a colorless odorless trace gas that is also a primary energy source – Sun + CO2 for all plant life a pollutant and Greenhouse gas. CO2 does retain heat in the atmosphere so there is cause for concern over whether too much can overheat things. The science is not settled and is in fact extremely complicated  with much still unknown. For example, just this week it was reported that scientists “discovered” that earth’s atmosphere actually extends out to the moon. What else might we not know about the atmosphere and climate? We do know that the CO2 effect on heating the earth is negatively logarithmic meaning after some point of concentration, the warming effect gets logarithmically less and less effective. We are well past that point today. So the addition of CO2 has almost no more direct warming effects.

 

The Climate Change doomsday industry rests its position of cataclysmic climate change on the positive feedback effects, caused by increased CO2, on other atmospheric processes to justify the need to stop burning oil, coal and gas. None of these feedback models have been shown to be accurate or factual in the real world. Because the climate models (which are immensely complex with thousands of known and unknown variables) continue to be wrong about past and future temperature predictions and their data input derived feedback models, scary scenarios are pushed to continue to alarm the public. It gets worse, for some reason all the historic temperature data has been altered to show a colder than recorded temperature during the early part of temperature recordings and then temperatures adjusted up in more recent times. Thus eliminating the warmest time of the last hundred years – the 1930s. Having it be warmer in the 30’s with no explanation for why makes the attempt to correlate the increase in CO2 as the causation for recent warming.

 

This brings us back, though through a long and winding undocumented and non cited rant to the point of questioning the need for massive taxation on Maine people. Will the tax do anything?

 

Maine State government has no leading role to play in this. Taxing Maine people to the point of  unaffordability accomplishes nothing.

 

Just last year’s world increase in CO2 was 20x greater than the total of Maine’s annual emissions.

Maine is 38th  lowest in CO2 emissions per capita in the US. Source –US EPA and EIA
Annual Maine total CO2 emissions = 16 million tons.
Annual US total CO2 emissions = 5,239 million tons
Annual World Total CO2 Emissions = 33,344 million tons
World 2016-2017 CO2 emissions increase = 426 million tons

China and India are estimated to increase over 5,000 million tons CO2 over the next 5 years.

 

According to the EIA, Maine sells approximately:

  • 700,000,000 gallons of gasoline per year
  • 300,000,000 gallons of diesel fuel
  • 14,000,000 gallons off road diesel
  • 300,000,000 HO (residential, commercial, and industrial)
  • 150,000,000 propane

 

The Carbon tax at $1/CO2 ton equals about 1 cent per gallon. Although LD 434 is very unclear about the method of calculating the tax per ton. Every other State method is 1 cents per gallon. Propane is about .6 cents per gallon /ton.

 

At 1,314,000,000 gallons per year,           5 cents /gal = $65,700,000  at $5/ton

40 cents/gal = $525,600,000 at $40/ton

 

Propane = at $40/ton is approximately 24 cents / gal

150,000,000 x $0.24 = $36,000,000

 

Natural gas would be in addition – I do not have those numbers yet.

 

So a $40/ton CO2 tax would easily be $600 million per year.

 

Reducing pollution, gaining efficiency, using less and developing better, cheaper and sustainable energy is a good goal. The market is there. Cleaner oil, renewable biofuels, high efficiency boilers, advanced building automated systems, IOT, all being done in the market will get us to a better, cleaner, and more productive world. Maine energy businesses are already doing great things to help customers use and save money. They can give you thousands of examples of how they saved customers money and made them more comfortable.

 

Taxing people, injuring the economy, taking money from people, giving it to bureaucrats and making them more powerful over people’s lives, is one of the most inefficient uses of scarce capital and is the opposite of liberty freedom and creativity. Leave the money in the people’s hands and out of the ruling class elite. The people will make the choice that’s best for them.