The Senate's leading climate-change bill, while aiming to combat global warming by reducing carbon dioxide in the air, actually poses "extraordinary perils" for Americans and the economy, according to a new study from The Heritage Foundation. The study, produced by Heritage's Center for Data Analysis (CDA), forecasts severe consequences-including crushing energy costs, millions of jobs lost and falling household income-if Congress enacts the so-called Lieberman-Warner bill.
The bill, which attempts to cap greenhouse gas emissions, with emphasis on carbon dioxide (CO2), creates federally allotted permits, or allowances, for each ton of CO2 emitted. The cost of allowances paid by emitters will have similar effects of a massive energy tax and will result in significantly higher energy costs. Lieberman-Warner (S.2191) relies heavily on an unproven technology, capturing carbon and sequestering it. Even with the most generous assumptions - presuming that carbon capture and sequestration is commercially developed in 10 years - the economic costs for the average American are staggering. Under a more realistic scenario, the economic impacts in terms of losses in the job market, losses in household budgets, and higher energy prices will be drastically higher. To make matters worse, there will be inconsequential effects on the environment to show for it, if any.
Inevitably the bill will affect each state differently. Some states are more energy-intensive than others and some rely a great deal on manufacturing to fuel its economy. Regardless, the costs in every state are significant. Increases in electricity, gasoline and natural gas paired with decreases in personal income are a dreadful site for any American. Moreover, the projected losses in jobs and Gross State Product (GSP) illustrate how each state's economy will be operating well under its potential directly because of the Lieberman-Warner bill. What follows are 50 state-by-state breakouts of the impact the bill would have on jobs and the economy.