In his column about the Transportation Climate Initiative, Jeff Wennberg completely misses the point. He claims an arms-length list of experience with cap and trade emissions reductions and doesn’t understand the “cap.” It’s a limit. Only so much pollution allowed.

As in the electric sector or among coal plants generating acid rain pollution in the Midwest, you decide (or in the case of transportation, your customer decides) to use less and emit less. Same with gasoline.

Ideally, there are no revenues from cap and trade because industry and customers choose lower-emission options. Yet Wennberg calls it a tax. No, it’s a limit on global warming pollution — one that a carbon tax lacks.

Cap and trade has been economically efficient, environmentally effective and easy to administer and underpins the western climate initiative that neighboring Quebec participated in. If Wennberg’s misinformation is representative of the quality of the climate debate we can expect in 2020, Vermont will subsidize lots of electric cars and emissions will keep growing.

Ned Farquhar


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