Hats off to the Montgomery County Council in Maryland for passing the nation’s first carbon tax. Here is a copy of the legislation. Below is a summary of the hearing by Clean Currents, a local clean energy business. CCAN also has an official statement on this legislation. Also, here is CCAN’s press release on the passage, which I’ve posted below the Clean Currents Statement.
Its official: today, the Montgomery County Council passed a carbon tax bill- the first of its kind in the United States! The bill, proposed by County Councilman Roger Berliner, taxes stationary emitters in Montgomery County that release more than one million tons of co2 into the atmosphere annually. Currently, there is only one such emitter- a coal plant owned by Mirant Corporation. At a hearing yesterday, Mirant Corporation officials spoke against the legislation claiming it would only lead to rate hikes for consumers. However, Councilman Berliner said the $5/ton tax would not have an impact on ratepayers for numerous reasons. This amount is marginal compared to the profits Mirant makes from the facility. The tax revenues will go to funding clean energy and other programs that are facing funding cuts during tough budgetary conditions. (more…)