Every year, Massachusetts sends $20 billion out of state to buy gas, coal and oil. What if we kept that money in Massachusetts and invested it in renewable energy, energy efficiency and clean transportation?
The Massachusetts Campaign for a Clean Energy Future is a coalition of environmental, business, faith, justice, youth, and civic organizations dedicated to passing effective and equitable carbon pricing legislation for Massachusetts.
What is Carbon Pricing?
Right now, fossil fuel companies use the common air we all breathe as a free dumping ground for their pollution. They don’t have to pay to pollute.
Burning coal, gas and oil releases carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses. These gasses cause:
- climate change, including rising temperatures and increased number and intensity of storms, floods, and fires;
- air pollution;
- asthma, lung disease, and heart disease.
All of these damages have real costs. We pay for the cost of burning dirty fuels. We pay in years of life lost, in taxes paid for disaster relief, and in health care bills.
Carbon pricing is:
Charging gas, oil and coal distributors a fee that reflects the damage fossil fuels cost when burned (“social” cost or “environmental” cost).
With carbon pricing, the cost of dirty fuels rises, as distributors pass on their increased costs to their customers–providing an incentive for consumers and businesses to use less energy and transition to cleaner options.
How can carbon fees protect people from increased costs?
Many governments that have established carbon fees rebate some or all of the funds raised back to consumers. Here is how it works:
All businesses and households get a percentage of the carbon fee.
People who use less energy are able to cover any increase in energy costs with the rebate they receive from the government. And those who transition to clean energy do not have to pay the carbon fee at all.
But businesses and consumers who continue to use a lot of polluting fuels will find that their costs go up. The carbon fee is an incentive to change.
What are other possible benefits?
The money raised from carbon fees can also be used to invest in renewable energy, clean transportation, resilience, and energy efficiency. Investing some of the funds from a carbon fee can accelerate the transition to a green economy. Investments can be targeted to low income households and environmental justice communities, so that everybody can access the benefits of clean and renewable energy.
Carbon pricing has been successful in countries all over the world.
Youth–college students, teenagers, children–are among the most persuasive voices calling for climate action. We are proud to support and partner with Our Climate, Sunrise, and the Youth Strike.
Sign the Climate Petition to Build Back Better!
What do you want? Clean air? Environmental justice? A green and thriving economy? Investments that help everybody move from dirty fuels to clean energy? A habitable planet for your kids and grandkids?
Then add your voice to 350Mass, Citizens Climate Lobby, Our Climate, Western Massachusetts CAN, Clean Water Action and people across the state, asking the Massachusetts House to pass strong climate legislation in 2020.
The Legislature must match its extraordinary leadership on Covid-19 with bold action on climate. Let’s kickstart the green recovery and create the future our children deserve.
Morality, Politics & Climate Crisis:
Massachusetts Interfaith Power and Light Annual Conference
Where: Temple Shalom, 175 Temple Street, West Newton, MA 02465
When: October 17, 2019, 7:00-9:00 PM
Representative Jennifer Benson the lead sponsor of H.2810, An Act to Promote Green Infrastructure and Reduce Carbon Emissions, and author Roger Gottlieb will speak.
Tickets are $15. For more information and to register, click here.
Our Climate Lobby Day
Where: Massachusetts State House
When: September 25, 2019 10 AM-
Youth from Our Climate keep the momentum going by visiting Massachusetts State House and telling legislators more about carbon pricing and why they want Massachusetts representatives to put a price on carbon and invest in the renewable economy of the future.
Massachusetts Youth Strike–Boston Government Center
Where: Boston Government Center
When: 10 AM Tabling and Gathering; 11:30-1 Rally; March to State House; 1:30-2:30 Action at Massachusetts State House
Massachusetts Right Whale Mosaic with Our Climate
Where: Boston Common in Front of the Massachusetts State House (24 Beacon Street)
When: June 22, 2019, 10 AM-1 PM
What: Assemble the world’s largest mosaic of a Right Whale, the Massachusetts state whale, made up of over 1000 tiles painted by Massachusetts youth. Each tile depicts something that will be lost due to climate change. Youth are building the whale to call attention to the climate crisis and demand that Massachusetts legislators ACT NOW to pass a carbon price.
More info: Our Climate Whale Mosaic
Carbon Pricing Forum with Representative Jennifer Benson
Where: First Church Unitarian Universalist, 6 Eliot Street, Jamaica Plain
When: Wed, February 6, 2019, 7:00-9:00 P.M.