Judy Weiss' suggestion that a carbon tax would somehow reduce carbon emissions (“A carbon tax,” April 28) fails a basic logic test. In order to reduce carbon emissions, one must reduce consumption. That means using less, not producing less. Oil companies are not the consumer. They produce what is demanded by the consumer and then would pass the increased costs of the tax on to the consumer. But rebating the collected taxes to consumers would offset the energy increases and provides no incentive for the consumer to reduce consumption.
So who would lose? Probably not investors, because the oil companies would raise prices before they reduce their dividends to their shareholders. Ultimately it comes back to the consumer in the form of higher costs for everything they buy that uses or depends on oil.
All the scheme really does is give the illusion that the government is cracking down on those "evil" big oil companies. It does nothing for carbon emissions.