As Skip noted earlier today, we’ve got a lot of coverage on the proposed Transportation Climate Initiative. Summed up, “It’s a Trap.” An abrogation of taxing power and electoral accountability to distant climate ministers you cannot vote out of office. But we have good news. Gov. Chris Sununu says, no way.
Today, Governor Chris Sununu announced that New Hampshire will not be participating in the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI). Under this scheme, New Hampshire drivers would be forced to pay a significant new gas tax with little environmental benefit to the state.
This makes me smile, but it’s not all good news. This bit is good for New Hampshire.
“I will not force Granite Staters to pay more for their gas just to subsidize other state’s crumbling infrastructure,” said Governor Chris Sununu. “New Hampshire is already taking substantial steps to curb our carbon emissions, and this initiative, if enacted, would institute a new gas tax by up to 17 cents per gallon while only achieving minimal results. This program is a financial boondoggle and the people of New Hampshire will never support it.”
Rural communities would be left at a severe disadvantage if New Hampshire participated in the TCI, as drivers will bear the brunt of the artificially higher gas prices.
But then we hit a bump.
“There are clearly better ways to achieve the purported goals of this program,” said Office of Strategic Initiatives Director Jared Chicoine. “This proposal is a huge hit to the wallets of rural drivers. The data makes it clear that — even without the TCI proposal — the market is already projected to reach many of the same environmental benchmarks. Here in New Hampshire, we are already aggressively moving forward with smarter environmental initiatives like more EV charging stations, offshore wind, and low income solar incentives to ensure New Hampshire’s long legacy of environmental stewardship continues to move forward.”
The concern for costs and burdens just went out of the window. Offshore wind and low-income solar initiatives? Someone is paying more for those things to exist and more to use the electricity they produce – costs that will embed themselves in budgets or electric bills.
I’m not sure how you justify objecting to a gas tax then say but hey, we want to straddle you with these costs – that might as well be a tax – for inefficient unreliable energy. Especially when there’s a better way.
We Need Real Energy
If the Governor’s office is genuinely interested in improving our energy footprint and lowering emissions (and costs – or controlling them), we’d see some serious commitment to expanding access to natural gas delivery infrastructure, pipelines, and power plants.
Every effort gets beat down by ignorant activists scaring the crap out of residents. If the Governor’s Office threw some weight and press into the fray, we might be able to address our long-term energy and cost issues.
And it’s a win-win.
Natural gas can satisfy the entirely pointless (virtue signaling) exercise of lowering CO2 emissions while providing cheap, reliable, abundant energy everywhere, including into the Lakes Region and even the North Country if we just get it done.
You can’t even begin to rely on solar or wind without it. It seems to me we could save a pile of cash wasted on propping up uncompetitive, unreliable renewables and just put our foot “on the gas.”
So yes, thank you for taking a stand against TCI. I hope you stay committed to that. But if you think EV cars and charging stations, wind farms, and Solar prop-ups are better solutions to reach any energy goal, I disagree. Unless the goal is to have less energy, less often, that costs more.
Here’s the full email press release.