Press Room

Audubon Says Carbon Pricing Bill Is A “Refreshingly Bold Move”

MARKET CHOICE Act is the first major federal climate legislation led by a Republican in a decade.

NEW YORK — “An overwhelming majority of Americans want to see pragmatic solutions to the problems facing our warming planet, and the MARKET CHOICE Act is a refreshingly bold move,” said David Yarnold (@david_yarnold), president and CEO of National Audubon Society, in response to upcoming legislation from Representative Carlos Curbelo (R-FL). “There is no easy solution for reducing carbon pollution and we’re going to have to find new ideas that can work in this intensely partisan political moment. This proposed legislation is a sound framework for a much-needed conversation that Audubon supports.”

Four quick facts about the MARKET CHOICE Act:

  • It replaces the federal gas tax with a carbon tax.
  • The revenue generated by this tax on greenhouse gas emissions will be invested in roads, bridges and other infrastructure, in efforts to protect coastal communities from storms and sea-level rise, and in programs to help low-income families with their energy bills.
  • There is a conditional moratorium on EPA regulation of stationary sources—meaning facilities like power plants and factories—for the purpose of reducing carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions. EPA can continue to regulate emissions for other purposes, like air quality standards, even if those regulations have the effect of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Leading modelers predict greenhouse gas reductions will be close to 30 percent by 2030, similar to the goals of the Paris Agreement and the Clean Power Plan.

“Climate change is the biggest threat to birds and the places they need. We can’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good; at Audubon we’re willing to consider hard choices if it means achieving solutions at the speed and scale needed. We can feel and see in the weather all around us that the status quo is increasingly a losing proposition—our planet is warming.

“While this ‘marker’ bill is a starting point, it puts on the table some new and admittedly controversial ideas. It raises questions about how to ensure every community is treated fairly; any specific price on carbon is a negotiation that should be based on the best scientific modeling; and there’s an EPA provision that deserves real debate. The specifics are all up for discussion; but how refreshing is it that we actually have a new climate framework to discuss?

“We commend Representative Curbelo for his exceptional leadership in putting forward a new framework to advance climate solutions.”

In 2014, Audubon published its Birds and Climate Change Report. The study shows that more than half of the bird species in North America could lose at least half of their current ranges by 2080 due to rising temperatures. These species include the Bald Eagle, the American Kestrel, and the Northern Harrier.

Given the urgent threat climate change poses to birds and people, Audubon supports common-sense, bipartisan solutions that reduce carbon emissions at the speed and scale necessary to protect birds and the places they need. 

To learn more about Audubon’s Climate Initiative, including how members and supporters can take steps to help birds in a changing climate, please visit www.audubon.org/climate.

The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow, throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education and on-the-ground conservation. Audubon's state programs, nature centers, chapters and partners have an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire and unite diverse communities in conservation action. Since 1905, Audubon's vision has been a world in which people and wildlife thrive. Audubon is a nonprofit conservation organization. Learn more how to help at www.audubon.org and follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @audubonsociety.

Contact: Anne Singer, asinger@audubon.org; (202) 271-4679.

###

“The views expressed in user comments do not reflect the views of Audubon. Audubon does not participate in political campaigns, nor do we support or oppose candidates.”