2. BP and Shell signal support for carbon tax bill
Axios' Amy Harder reports ... Oil-and-gas giants Royal Dutch Shell, BP and Equinor have signed onto a letter that praises new House carbon tax legislation, multiple sources said.
Why it matters: These companies, along with a few other big oil-and-gas producers, have long said they support a tax on carbon emissions. Signing a letter — even though it’s still just a letter — could bring more active lobbying on the bill.
The letter is still circulating among companies and other parties.
Where it stands: The bill, which would replace the federal gas tax with a carbon tax, was introduced Monday by GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo with one fellow GOP co-sponsor, Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick.
Yes, but: The letter does not explicitly endorse the bill. Instead, it’s expected to broadly praise the measure and its role in jumpstarting a long dormant policy conversation in Congress, according to people who have seen a copy or are familiar with it.
The bottom line: Curbelo's legislation is symbolically important but has zero chance of passage in the foreseeable future, thanks to powerful GOP opposition to carbon taxes.
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My thought bubble: A big question is whether Exxon, the most powerful U.S.-based multinational oil giant, will ever come off the sidelines.
Exxon has for years said it backs a carbon tax. But the company doesn't actually prod Congress on the matter, despite joining a coalition last year called the Climate Leadership Council that's pushing a tax proposal.