Energy Expert: Carbon Tax Pushed by Billionaires Is the Real Risky Business

By Barbara Hollingsworth | July 22, 2014 | 11:52am EDT

Former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. (AP photo)

( –  “Risky Business” - a 56-page report released in June warning that “the world may have as little as 15 years to keep planetary warming to a tolerable level” - is just another attempt by economic and political elites to impose a carbon tax on Americans, says Dan Kish, senior vice president for policy at the Institute for Energy Research (IER).

The report was co-chaired by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, and Thomas Steyer, the retired founder of Farallon Capital Management.

Citing the U.N.’s latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which acknowledged a 17-year “pause” in global warming, "Risky Business" nonetheless urges “an aggressive push to bring down carbon emissions” while depoliticizing the issue.

But Kish isn’t buying what the three billionaires are selling. “I think it’s one of those things that Americans are beginning to dislike a lot about people who get involved in politics, have huge amounts of money, and then tell them how to live when they sort of jet around the world and live high off the hog.”

“They want taxes and more control in Washington, and they aren’t going to let the facts get in their way,” he told

The carbon tax that Bloomberg, Paulson and Steyer are pushing as a solution to global warming would be more disastrous for the U.S. than the higher temperatures they predict, he added.

Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg (AP Photo)

“A carbon tax is going to hurt us, and hurt us greatly,” Kish pointed out. “A carbon tax is going to kill everyone. It will affect everything.”

Australia recently repealed its carbon tax, which was the highest in the world. The Australian government estimates the move will save the average family A$550 a year on their electric bills.

But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said this week he would like to pass a carbon tax after the November mid-term elections.

“These guys seem incapable of understanding that the last thing in the world that Americans need right now is more expensive energy, especially when all this [global warming] is theoretical and is 100 years away,” Kish told

Kish also noted that a carbon tax would be an inevitable job killer.

“This issue – global warming – is always at the bottom of the issues that Americans think are important to their lives and to their family’s lives. I mean, they’re more interested in jobs, and there’s no way you can do this without reducing the number of jobs. It’s just that simple,” he told

“At the end of the day, these are some very wealthy and very prominent people who want to put in place a system using the government (despite the fact they say this is for business people) to impose a carbon tax, which will drive up the cost of energy for the average person on the street,” Kish added.

“And it won’t hurt them at all because they’ve got plenty of resources and they don’t really even pump their own gasoline, so they don’t even know what it costs – or care.”

New fracking technology has enabled the U.S. to become the world’s largest producer of both oil and natural gas liquids, averaging 11 billion barrels per day and surpassing both Saudi Arabia and Russia, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA).

North Dakota and Texas now produce nearly half of all U.S. crude oil, and are expected to reduce U.S. dependency on foreign oil to just 22 percent next year – the lowest level in 45 years. But imposing a carbon tax would destroy that progress, Kish says.

“This is taking the energy revolution in the United States out and shooting it in the head,” he told

“And honestly, you know, if you were going to get something in return, but all they’re doing basically is taking computer projections about what might happen that have shown to be wrong and telling us that we all have to change our ways.”

“Ultimately for some of these people, it’s about investment opportunities,” he added. “If there’s a carbon tax or some sort of trading system in place, then for example Goldman Sachs, where Hank Paulson used to be the chairman, would stand to make a huge amount of money if all of a sudden every molecule of carbon dioxide got to be traded on Wall Street. And to some degree, this has been a fight between New York and London over which would be the trading center for carbon dioxide in the world.”

Stringent measures to reduce carbon dioxide emissions have already failed in other countries like Spain and Germany, Kish pointed out.

“All of the things that these folks want to do in the United States have been tried in other countries. Where they’ve been tried, they’ve been massive failures economically, and now they’re reversing themselves. Yet this is exactly the policies that they want to institute for us here in the United States.”

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