While everyone will not directly be taxed, most Americans will still be paying for the carbon tax. If you buy any form of energy from a carbon source, ie coal, gasoline, natural, etc, the carbon tax applied to that manufacturer will be passed on to you the consumer as a mark-up in the cost of the good. Essentially Americans will be paying a higher price for the same goods.
On paper carbon cap and trade seems like a good way to solve the greenhouse gas and global warming problems. If you look at countries that employ cap and trade, such as some in Europe, you will see that all cap and trade does is give an illusion of regulating emissions while skyrocketing the prices for consumers.
I agree with cox01‘s assessment. Cap-and-trade is nothing more than a more complicated carbon tax designed to placate corporations who make large campaign contributions to politicians. Since carbon emissions affect everyone through the phenomenon of climate change, a tax is a good way to internalize the cost of carbon emissions. This is known as a pigouvian tax. Much like taxes on things like cigarettes and alcohol, a pigouvian tax on carbon would be good for everyone.
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