Oil Companies Join Lobby for US Carbon Tax

BP Plc and Royal Dutch Shell Plc oil companies are giving $1 million each for Carbon Dividends advocacy campaign in the US, in an to effort to persuade Congress to enact a carbon tax-and-dividend plan. Ford Motor Co. is also signing on as a founding member of the group and developing its underlying initiative, the Climate Leadership Council.

Fossil fuel companies are under increasing pressure by investors to combat climate change in response due to growing public alarm about the global rise in temperature. Economists have long favored a carbon tax as the best approach to putting a price on the greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change.

BP and Shell’s contributions are going to a campaign for a carbon tax-and-dividend plan, and will be underwritten by oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp., renewable power producer EDF Renewables Inc., and nuclear power generator Exelon Corp. 

The initiative they’re backing would impose a nationwide price on carbon dioxide emissions,starting at $40 per ton, with the promise of greater reductions in greenhouse gases than achieved with existing laws. For businesses, the plan also promises two potent prizes: a shield against climate-related lawsuits tied to past, legal emissions, and the end of federal regulations targeting greenhouse gas releases. 

Under the plan, carbon tax revenue would be redistributed to households as quarterly dividend checks.

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