In Connecticut, there’s growing momentum to repeal that state’s retrograde pipeline tax law, which allows gas utilities to make consumers pay for the new pipelines through a pipeline tax. Supporters of this anti-consumer, anti-environment law maintain that it needs to stay on the books because it provides a back-up source of funding for new fossil fuel infrastructure that may become necessary in case of some “unforeseeable emergency.”
This argument is a ruse. It takes years to plan and build a new gas pipeline, so it isn’t viable response to an emergency. And – with climate change already hurting New England’s economy, health, infrastructure, environment, and quality of life – why would Connecticut ever do anything to expand or prolong its dependence on greenhouse gas-emitting fossil fuels?
If Connecticut ever experiences an energy emergency, new gas pipelines won’t provide rapid relief. If the “emergency” is sufficiently slow-moving that it can wait several years for a response, then that response must be more clean, safe renewable energy, not more dirty and dangerous fossil fuel.
Connecticut has an exciting opportunity to take a step forward by repealing a law that’s backward. There’s no need for a pipeline tax law to serve as an “emergency back-up.” This is a tax cut that conservatives and liberals can all support.
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