October 23, 2010

Crap and Trade is a Republican Idea

Two in a row for GRIST - they released a great issue yesterday. In "The GOP changes its tune on cap-and-trade", Dan Weiss explains how and why the Republicans are:

"...repudiating Reagan's legacy of cap-and-trade for cheap political gain to curry favor with polluting industries".

"Cap-and-trade is a cost-effective alternative that allows the firms that can more cheaply reduce their emissions below their required limit to sell any additional reductions to companies that are not able to make reductions as easily. This creates a system that guarantees a set level of overall reductions while rewarding the most efficient companies and ensuring that the cap can be met at the lowest possible cost to the economy.

The Reagan White House conceived the first cap-and-trade program to reduce pollution. It was used in the 1980s to phase out lead in gasoline at a lower cost."

Dan Weiss also sites Cap and Trade proposals by Newt Gingrich, George W. Bush, and Sarah Palin as recently as 2008. What a short memory we are supposed to have! Republicans bank on contributions from major polluters in exchange for their flip-flop on this issue dear to companies like Peabody and Chevron. Even before the court ruling that opened the floodgates of money for the upcoming election, Chevron has recently laundered millions through the Chamber of Commerce, an effort that is being scaled up this year. But not for candidates who support even the mildest attempts to mitigate the real cost of dirty industry.

Daniel J. Weiss originally posted his article at The Center for American Progress.