Summer is upon us, which to many means hitting the road to visit family and friends or vacationing at a favorite beach or national park. This year, however, Americans are facing unique challenges that may thwart holiday travel plans, or at the very least put a damper on them due to increasing energy costs.
Energy prices are reaching record highs. Today, a gallon of gas costs $4.91, a jump from the $4.30 that was seen only a month ago. Natural gas prices, which directly impact electricity prices, are also increasing, caused by constrained supply and higher demand. Residents of New England, for instance, are expected to pay 16 percent more for electricity this summer than last summer, according to the Energy Information Administration.
Reducing the economic burden from higher energy bills is critically important for American households and businesses. High electricity and gas prices adversely impact middle and low-income households disproportionately since they have to spend a larger share of their income on energy bills. When prices increase, families are forced to make tough choices between groceries, health care, or much less whether to take a summer vacation. To add insult to injury, the fact that those goods and activities cost more also means that it further cuts into people’s budgets.
Frustrated by high energy costs and higher levels of inflation, Americans are demanding answers and deserve real solutions, not just rhetoric. To provide Americans with answers and policymakers with the tools to combat inflated prices, C3 Solutions is releasing the Climate and Freedom Agenda.
The Climate and Freedom Agenda is a comprehensive policy playbook that offers real solutions to lower prices for consumers, bolster energy security, and accelerate climate progress. Specifically, the Climate and Freedom Agenda focuses on: improving opportunities for energy innovation, enhancing energy security, driving down costs and speeding up deployment, extending natural climate solutions, and committing to research, development, and deployment.
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Central to the agenda is removing barriers to empower entrepreneurs, property owners and the private sector to provide bottom-up economic and environmental solutions.
Importantly, the Climate and Freedom Agenda is not meant to recreate the wheel. Rather, it builds off of the work that leading lawmakers, policy experts, and legislative proposals (many of which have bipartisan support) have put forward that can improve energy affordability, grow the economy and improve the environment.
For decades, Americans have witnessed a largely one-sided discussion surrounding climate change, energy and the environment. For too long, climate policy has been synonymous with big government solutions that push for more government intervention and central planning. The release of the Climate and Freedom Agenda comes at a turning point in the climate discussion. Just last week the House Republican Energy Taskforce released their own energy and climate strategy that looks to lower energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions while growing the economy and creating jobs.
The release of the Taskforce’s energy blueprint and C3 Solution’s Climate and Freedom Agenda represents a notable shift in the climate debate. Conservatives are at the table with meaningful proposals to protect our natural and economic environment. It is our hope that with this Agenda lawmakers from both sides of the aisle can come together to pass commonsense energy and climate solutions.