Dodd Favors Corporate Tax for Emissions

The Associated Press
Wednesday, April 18, 2007; 9:47 PM

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Chris Dodd, splitting with his Democratic presidential rivals over the best way to cut pollution and curb global warming, wants to tax corporations for their carbon dioxide emissions.

"You have to have a price-driven strategy if you are going to succeed in this thing," Dodd said in a telephone interview Wednesday with The Associated Press. "Otherwise, I'm afraid it's just a lot of talk. People are trying to avoid the difficult decisions."

The Connecticut senator will unveil his energy plan Thursday that calls for a steep increase of auto fuel economy standards to 50 miles per gallon by 2017 and a mandate for the government to use clean-energy vehicles and green technology in all its offices.

"I'm going to set a high goal here and drive it," said Dodd, who touts his plan as a way to end U.S. dependence on foreign oil and to boost the economy.

Dodd's proposal sets a goal of reducing 80 percent of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

He wants to discourage corporate greenhousee gas polluters by imposing a per-ton fee on businesses for carbon emissions.

The tax revenue, which he estimates at about $50 billion annually, would be used to develop renewable energies and to reduce prices for consumer products.

Critics warn such a tax would burden consumers and hurt the economy.

Most of Dodd's Democratic rivals back some form of a cap-and-trade system that sets limits on carbon emissions and makes companies pay for producing greenhouse gases. But none has called for a corporate carbon tax. Dodd backs both approaches.

"You can't just do this by talking about investing in fuel cells and investing in solar (energy)," he said. "You've got to have a tough answer. And if you don't have a tough answer, you aren't going to get there."


MURRELLS INLET, S.C. (AP) _ Republican presidential candidate John McCain told voters Wednesday that if he becomes commander in chief he'll brief the public biweekly from the Oval Office on developments in the Iraq war.

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