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Oil Companies Offer Praise, but No Endorsement, for GOP Carbon Tax

A group of oil, gas, and other manufacturing companies announced their support Wednesday for a Republican lawmaker's proposed tax on carbon emissions.

Representative Carlos Curbelo (R-Florida) introduced legislation this week that would replace the federal gas tax with a $24-per-ton tax on carbon emissions from oil refineries, coal mines, and gas processing plants.

The 34 companies, which include Shell, BP, and DTE Energy, stopped short of endorsing the bill, but praised Curbelo's efforts in a letter to the representative as an attempt to "drive a robust, non-partisan dialogue on how valuing or pricing carbon and strengthening the economy are not mutually exclusive."

House Republicans denounced the latest effort in a non-binding measure, but oil companies like Shell and BP have previously endorsed carbon taxes as a way to meet internal sustainability guidelines or combat competitors from the coal industry, the Hill reports.