Carbon Pricing: Helpful Or Harmful?

By: Jill Cordes
By: Jill Cordes

Will putting a price on carbon do irreparable damage to the economy? That's the debate among policymakers and scientists tracking the harmful effects of CO2 on the environment. Opponents of carbon pricing say a recession is not the time to implement such policy.(5) But the idea's supporters say it's a matter of putting a financial incentive on innovation.

David Victor is a professor at the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies at UC San Diego: " The whole idea is to make carbon energy more expensive, so that we have an incentive to reduce our emissions. And if you don't do that, then the system won't work. My own view is that over the long term, the price of energy isn't going to rise very much, we will be able to get all the energy we need, probably at very low cost and with very low emissions."

If researchers like Victor are right, putting a price on carbon emissions could motivate businesses and industry to switch to clean, renewable energy sources with little disruption or added cost.


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