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Thomas Gallatin / March 5, 2020

Dan Crenshaw Tackles Climate Change

House GOP members offer a positive free-market plan to lower carbon emissions.

It’s called the New Energy Frontier, and it’s a joint plan by Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who propose a free-market strategy to address the challenges posed by climate change. Crenshaw cogently observes that conservatives have all too often allowed leftists to put them on the defensive. Since conservatives reject leftists’ extreme solutions to a problem leftists artificially inflate into a crisis — a problem such as rising global CO2 levels — conservatives, Crenshaw says, are effectively labeled as “being too heartless or too stupid to solve the original problem.”

The plan “focuses specifically on carbon capture, a field in which there is already promising innovation,” Crenshaw explains. “For instance, the company NET Power, located near my district in Houston, has developed a natural-gas electricity plant that has the capacity to power 5,000 homes, while capturing and recirculating CO2 back through the plant via an innovative thermodynamic cycle. As a result, the system produces zero net emissions.”

Furthermore, the House GOP’s plan rejects the Democrats’ often-promoted carbon tax in favor of a carbon-capture tax credit that incentivizes technological development rather than penalizing industry. The U.S. leads the world in CO2 emissions reduction due in large part to the development of fracking technology that has led to our nation’s natural-gas boom. Leftists always resort to taxes, which suppress innovation. Crenshaw argues it’s time for a carrot instead of a stick.

Crenshaw asserts that “conservatives can either tackle the issue of carbon emissions sensibly by proposing workable solutions, or run the risk of allowing the Democrats to do it for us — with policies that would offer marginal environmental benefits at a devastating cost to the economy.” The Crenshaw-McCarthy bill is a welcome proactive approach.

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