US energy chief floats idea of a carbon emissions tax
WASHINGTON (AFP) – US Energy Secretary Steven Chu has floated the idea of a carbon emissions tax to fight global warming, in an interview with The New York Times Thursday.
During the US presidential campaign, the notion was kept largely on the back burner as candidates were reluctant to promote the idea of costlier energy at a time when gasoline prices were soaring.
But since President Barack Obama's administration took office in January, Congress has been working on setting up a system for swapping greenhouse gas emissions quotas similar to the one used in the European Union.
And Chu said "alternatives could emerge, including a tax on carbon emissions," the Times reported.
Chu, a Nobel laureate in physics, long concerned about global warming, acknowledged it would be a tough sell to get a law passed in the United States that could lead to higher energy prices.
But he said he "supports putting a price on carbon emissions to begin to address climate change" the daily said.
Chu also stressed that the world was in real need of technological innovation to help address global warming, in areas such as solar energy, electric batteries and biofuels.
LINK TO NY TIMES ARTICLE