Monday, September 19, 2016

Pollution Tax

Could a pollution tax truly help the environment with little to no damage to the economy? A pollution tax is able to make car owners of less fuel efficient cars monitor and limit the amount of gasoline they buy (National Bureau of Economic Research, http://www.nber.org/digest/jul13/w18849.html, 2016). I find this to be a very compelling argument for the tax. It clearly works on limiting the amount of gas people buy who use gas guzzling vehicles, but at no cost to those who use fuel efficient green vehicles. If the government increased the pollution tax, we could see a dramatic increase in the air quality.

Although a tax like this could help raise government funds and protect the environment at the same time, it has its problems. It can create an economic strain on Americans' thus slowing down commerce (How Money Walks, http://www.howmoneywalks.com/should-gas-taxes-be-raised-a-look-at-the-pros-and-cons/, 2016). I agree that the economic hardships brought by this tax are a massive consequence and should be considered. If an American is taking part in legal commerce, they should not be punished for doing so. The end result of this could be catastrophic and destroy the economy.

In my opinion I think we need to get rid of or at least limit the gas tax. The gas tax is an unprogressive tax that hurts those who are financially struggling more than anyone else (Kavips, https://kavips.wordpress.com/2014/02/02/10-cent-gas-tax-pros-and-cons/, 2016). Since the proposed tax is they same amount for everybody, it is harder for a poor person to come up with that money than a wealthy one. I find these type of taxes to be unfair to lower class citizens as it means they have to pay more than their fair share. If a gas tax could be put into a proportional form I would maybe consider it, but until that happens, its affect on the economy and lower class citizens makes it lack my support.

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