Wired: Thank Colleges for Carbon Taxes – Really

Taxes fund public goods including health care, fire and police protection, education and more. A MIT economist points out that taxing carbon can be up to 10 times more efficient than current policies like fuel-economy standards for reducing emissions. Universities are leading the way in showing government how to tax carbon emissions. Matt Simon, writing for Wired, describes two programs. Yale University’s carbon-charge program assesses campus buildings’ energy use against their historical record. When a building reduces energy use, the department gets money back, and when the building performs worse than Yale was a whole, then the department must pay. “By pitting individual buildings against their own historical energy usage, the system helps control for the different sizes and ages of the facilities – a 50-year-old building can’t compete against a brand new one, after all,” Simon explains. “All the while, the buildings are compared to the school as a whole.” At smaller Swarthmore College, the sustainability program charges a fee to raise awareness. Students are invested in protecting the environment for future generations, and MIT economist Christopher Knittel praises universities for making such programs “a vehicle for learning and research.” – YaleGlobal

Wired: Thank Colleges for Carbon Taxes – Really

Colleges like Yale and Swarthmore devise and test carbon-charge programs to protect and improve campuses, and research what works and what doesn’t
Matt Simon
Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Read the article from Wired about carbon-charge programs at Yale University and Swarthmore College.

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