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There's a simple solution to Oregon's budget problems, and indeed the nation's: Begin taxing emissions of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides.
In recessions, increased taxation is categorically opposed because it is believed to discourage investment and job creation. But emissions taxation does exactly the opposite--it encourages investment in the energy technologies of the future, and creates jobs.
Such taxation is also fair, because it simply recovers for the public the costs now externalized by polluting industries. A small emissions tax could easily balance the state budget quickly, fairly, and with minimal administrative overhead.
posted 4 years, 4 months ago
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