HOUSTON, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Former U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker III on Thursday proposed a carbon tax as the most efficient way of reducing emissions.
Addressing the first Global Energy Transitions Summit, co-hosted by the Baker Institute's Center for Energy Studies and Baker Botts LLP, a law firm, at Rice University, Texas in the United States, the former state secretary said the carbon tax proposal represents a good faith effort to move beyond debate over current climate policies.
He advocated carbon tax as an insurance policy to deal with the potential risks of climate change.
According to research published in the American journal Climate Policy in August, researchers at the North Carolina State University argued that despite the Trump administration's large-scale rollback of environmental policies and the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord, U.S. emissions are likely to remain relatively flat over the next few years.
This is because market forces are likely to bolster the expansion of clean energy and other emissions-cutting efforts, particularly in the electricity sector, against changes in federal policy, the researchers said.
However, the Mid-Century Strategy, released at the end of former President Barack Obama's final term, aimed to bring U.S. emissions down to 80 percent below their 2005 levels by the year 2050.
The plan was meant to build upon the nation's pledge under the Paris climate accord, a short-term target of cutting U.S. emissions by 26 percent to 28 percent below the 2005 level by the year 2025.
The one-day Global Energy Transitions Summit held in Houston featured over a dozen prominent speakers from the oil, gas and power industries, including CEOs and other corporate leaders, along with industry experts in finance, investment and law, covering topics from oil, gas to electricity, renewables and technology.