- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 25, 2019

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Thursday released a plan to tackle climate change, saying she hopes to “mobilize” $10 trillion in public and private funding on the effort over the next decade through provisions such as a carbon tax.

“The next president has to be willing to take bold leaps to lead this effort and stand up to the climate change deniers, polluters, and oil and gas special interests,” Ms. Gillibrand, a 2020 presidential candidate, said in a Medium post. “I will, because we can’t afford not to.”

Ms. Gillibrand said she would set a price on carbon, starting at $52 per metric ton, that would generate an estimated $200 billion every year to go toward other renewable energy efforts.

The plan also includes an excise tax on fossil fuel production, which would generate an estimated $100 billion every year to go toward climate mitigation projects.

“The fossil fuel industry — not taxpayers — will pay for projects to lessen the effects of sea-level rise, extreme weather, and other climate-related disasters,” she said.

She touted her support for the “Green New Deal” and vowed to make sure the U.S. economy hits net-zero emissions no later than 2050, with a goal of getting there in the next decade.

Ms. Gillibrand would also phase in new vehicle emission standards to make newly manufactured cars reach net-zero emissions “by the end of the next decade.”

She also set a goal of getting the U.S. to zero-carbon electricity in a decade.

Mirroring elements of other candidates’ climate change proposals, she would also end new fossil fuel leases and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on public lands, among other priorities.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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