Department of Energy Reports Carbon Dioxide Reductions Would Cost $80 Billion Annually

Recently the Department of Energy’s Energy Information Agency released a new report that addressed capping emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) from electric power plants.

Today, Citizens for a Sound Economy expressed its continued opposition to the so-called “four-pollutant” scheme pushed by extreme environmental special interests and some on Capitol Hill. “The EIA report told us what we already knew, that attempting to cap CO2 emissions would hurt American families and weaken our economy – in this case to the tune of $80 billion per year, and 643,000 lost jobs,” said Patrick Burns, CSE’s Director of Energy and Environmental Policy.

The four-pollutant scheme would cap emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2), mercury (Hg), and CO2 from electric power plants. While there is no dispute that the first three of these substances can be harmful at certain levels of exposure, CO2 is a totally natural gas that humans exhale with every breath.

“CO2 does not harm air quality. In fact, without it, life on planet Earth would cease to exist. There is no scientific evidence out there that suggests that we should regulate CO2 emissions,” Burns added.

The use of fossil fuels that drive the American economy, such as natural gas, oil, and coal, releases CO2. Given this, President Bush determined earlier this year that capping CO2 would significantly harm American families. The most recent EIA report reinforces the wisdom of this decision. According to EIA, “electricity prices are projected to be much higher when CO2 emissions are capped than when NOx, SO2, or Hg emissions are capped…”

“It’s understandable that extreme environmental special interests would support regulating CO2 since economic growth conflicts with their agenda,” Burns concluded. “But it’s hard to believe that any politician would want to hand American families an $80 billion increase in their electricity bill – especially after what we’ve seen in California over the past year.”

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