Don Beyer Announces Support for Progressive Carbon Tax

For Immediate Release

Contact:  Ann O’Hanlon, 703-795-1239,

March 15, 2014 (Belle Haven, Virginia)  – Flanked by local and national environmental leaders, former Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer today announced his support for a progressive carbon tax in order to fight climate change, spur green energy, and heighten consumer consciousness on this critical issue.

“The most effective way of reducing carbon emissions is to put a tax on carbon pollution,” Beyer said.  “This is the single most important issue of our time and we need to act.  We owe it to our children and grandchildren.”

Beyer, who was a member of Governor Tim Kaine’s Climate Change Commission, stressed that a carbon tax policy must include investments in clean energy and in energy efficiency, as well as protections for low-income households, who will otherwise bear a disproportionate burden of a carbon tax.  Beyer said that recent proposals include tax credits and other mechanisms to ensure protection for poor and working-class Americans.

Beyer was introduced by environmental leaders Chris Miller and Larry Schweiger, who praised Beyer’s environmental record and dedication.  “I saw Don’s commitment to the environment firsthand when I visited him overseas while he was President Obama’s ambassador to Switzerland,” Schweiger said.  “At Don’s direction, the embassy’s carbon footprint was assessed – a first for a U.S. embassy.  Then he and his staff worked to reduce that footprint by 40 percent through many efforts, including the use of hydropower.  This educated, environmentally astute district deserves a congressman with Don’s environmental credentials.” 

Beyer also spoke today about local environmental concerns, including his opposition to fracking in the George Washington National Forest, his concern about the proposed expansion of the Lorton landfill, and his interest in seeing through the restoration of Dyke Marsh.