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What would joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative mean for Pennsylvania?

Dec 11, 2020 by AFP

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf is planning to have the Keystone State, without a vote from the General Assembly, join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a coalition of states that have decided to levy direct taxes on their carbon emissions through a “cap and trade” program.

So, what would joining RGGI mean for Pennsylvania’s economy?

In the fourth episode of Grant Us Knowledge, Grant Gulibon discusses why RGGI would raise energy costs, cut jobs, and harm businesses — all without making a meaningful difference to Pennsylvania’s carbon emissions.

“Joining RGGI is expected to cause a tremendous amount of upheaval in Pennsylvania’s economy and in communities throughout the commonwealth,” Gulibon says.

Joining Gulibon in this episode are Americans for Prosperity Policy Fellow Clint Woods, who specializes in regulatory policy, and Rebecca Oyler, state legislative director with the National Federation of Independent Business-Pennsylvania.

Over the course of the nearly 29-minute episode, they discuss:

0:53 — What RGGI is and what it would mean for Pennsylvania.

4:26 — Why RGGI doesn’t work for the states that have joined it.

11:01 — How RGGI would raise energy costs and slash job growth in Pennsylvania.

16:28 — How Pennsylvania’s energy sector would fare under RGGI.

19:00 — RGGI’s impact on low-income Americans.

21:40 — How Pennsylvania’s carbon emissions are dropping, even without RGGI.

23:00 — How RGGI would empower government to pick winners and losers in the marketplace.

“If you look at electricity prices, eight of the 10 states in RGGI have higher retail electricity rates than Pennsylvania as of this summer,” says Woods, noting that RGGI tends to drive energy prices up.

Listen to the conversation below.

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