CBO Director’s Testimony Ignores Most Obvious Use of Cap-and-Trade Revenues

Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas W. Elmendorf summarizes his testimony to Congress (there’s also a link to the pdf file of the full testimony). Unfortunately, the simplest way to ‘distribute the value of carbon allowances,’ to paraphrase Elmendorf, is not mentioned: dividing it up equally. The technical details (division!) have been dealt with before on this blog by Jonathan. Why would this obvious alternative be left out? My inner conspiracy theorist whispers that it’s left out to make giving away allowances the most politically viable alternative on the table. After all, why should all those poor folks benefit, when the rest of us have to shell out more at the pump?

Director’s Blog » Blog Archive » Testimony: The Distribution of Revenues from a Cap-and-Trade Program for Carbon Dioxide Emissions