Biden’s Climate Plan Would Punish Household Budgets, Lacks Voter Support

Joe Biden pledges to spend $2 trillion on his climate plan during his first term. Divided among America’s 120 million households, that puts the average American household on the hook for $17,000 – or more than $4,000 per household per year – in additional spending burdens.

Biden’s nominee for Treasury Secretary, Janet Yellin, proposes to add a carbon dioxide tax – on top of Biden’s $2 trillion in direct government spending – that would start at $40 per ton, and increase by a hefty 5 percent each year. The left-of-center Brookings Institution calculates that such a plan would add an initial 36 cents to the price of gasoline. It would also add an additional 20-percent hike to consumer electricity bills.

Yellin’s carbon dioxide tax would not only saddle consumers with large direct increases in gasoline and electricity prices, it would also punish consumers by raising costs for goods and services throughout the economy, with those higher costs showing up in higher consumer prices. As the Brookings Institution notes, “Higher energy prices would raise costs for industry and households, resulting in lower profits, wages, and consumption.” That also translates to higher unemployment and lower living standards.

It clear that Biden has no voter mandate to impose such draconian and expensive policies on the American people. On November 1 – just two days before the 2020 election – the New York Times published a poll showing only 37 percent of Americans are “very concerned” about climate change. That is less than the 39 percent of Americans who are either “not at all” concerned or “not too” concerned about climate change. The remaining 21 percent are merely “somewhat” concerned.

Those Americans who are “somewhat concerned” about climate change do not support spending more than a few dollars per month, at the most, on climate change programs. A 2019 Associated Press poll found less than half of Americans would pay even $10 per month to address climate change. Barely more than half of Americans (57 percent) would be willing to pay as little as a single dollar per month.

Ultimately, Joe Biden’s proposed climate plan is tremendously expensive, economically disastrous, and lacking the support of the American people. There are many reasons why Biden accumulated the number of votes he did in the November election, but aggressive climate activism is not one of them.

James Taylor
James Taylor
James Taylor is the President of the Heartland Institute. Taylor is also director of Heartland's Arthur B. Robinson Center for Climate and Environmental Policy. Taylor is the former managing editor (2001-2014) of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly publication devoted to sound science and free-market environmentalism.

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  1. I hope you guys get to testify on this issue & I’d start prepping now. You can also team with the likes of Heritage, Hoover, CEI, AEI. The person to get to is Kerry. I actually had been messaging Biden since the fall on FB on this. It’s clear that the public is never enfranchised by any politician. They follow trends. They don’t listen to people. I have 3 degrees, one in this stuff. The Green Deal would be devastating as is. I’m fine w/ renewables as supplements but I don’t want any forest cut down to replace with a solar/wind farm b/c that essentially does zilch for the temp. I’m not for losing the gasoline-powered car nor my furnace. Electric heat is very expensive. I fear brownouts.


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