Earlier this week, Congressman Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) introduced H.R. 6463, the Modernizing America with Rebuilding to Kick-start the Economy of the Twenty-first Century with a Historic Infrastructure-Centered Expansion Act, or the “MARKET CHOICE Act.” This bill would amend the tax code to add tax equal to $24 per metric ton of carbon dioxide (CO2), with inflation adjustment, to pay for infrastructure improvements and reduce harmful pollution.
Under this legislation’s 10-year window, the carbon tax would provide needed revenue in our infrastructure and energy assistance programs. Specifically, for our infrastructure, $692.1 billion, or 70% of tax revenue, would go towards fixing the Highway Trust Fund (HTF); $24.7 billion, or 2.5% of tax revenue, would be directed towards the Airport and Airways Trust Fund; $49.4 billion, or 5% of tax revenue, would be directed towards coastal infrastructure; and $988.8 million, or .1% of tax revenue, for the Leaking Underground Storage Tank (LUST) Fund.
For our energy assistance programs, $98.8 billion, or 10% of tax revenue, would go towards low income energy assistance; $14.6 billion, or 1.5% of tax revenue, would be directed towards weatherization programs; and $29.6 billion would be directed towards displaced workers.
Finally, the legislation would establish a performance-based suspension on finalizing and enforcing Clean Air Act regulations on greenhouse gas emissions from stationary sources covered by the tax as well as establish a National Climate Commission to report to Congress every six years with recommendations for emissions reductions.
Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) is an original cosponsor.
The Columbia University Center for Global Energy Policy has analyzed the MARKET CHOICE Act and has concluded that this legislation would reduce our emissions footprint while provide revenue to address our infrastructure investment deficit.
The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has supported the carbon tax as a tool to provide revenue to fix our infrastructure. ASCE’s government relations team will continue to monitor Congressman Curbelo’s efforts to reduce our carbon footprint and address our nation’s infrastructure investment challenges and will keep you apprised of the latest developments.