2019 - 2020 LEGISLATURE
January 21, 2020 - Introduced by Representatives Neubauer, Anderson, Emerson,
Billings, Bowen, Brostoff, Considine, Crowley, Goyke, Gruszynski, Hebl,
Kolste, Ohnstad, Pope, Riemer, Sargent, Shankland, Sinicki, Spreitzer,
Stubbs, Subeck, C. Taylor, Vruwink and Zamarripa, cosponsored by Senators
Miller, Carpenter, Hansen, Larson, Risser and Smith. Referred to
Committee on Energy and Utilities.
1An Act to create
196.025 (1h) of the statutes; relating to: evaluating the social
2cost of carbon emissions.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill requires the Public Service Commission to consider the social cost of
carbon in determining whether to issue certificates required to construct large
electric generating facilities or high-voltage transmission lines or to engage in
certain other public utility projects. The bill defines “social cost of carbon” as a
measure of the economic harms and other impacts expressed in dollars that result
from emitting one ton of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The bill includes the
legislature's finding that the social cost of carbon is $50 per ton of carbon dioxide
emitted into the atmosphere. However, the bill requires the PSC to annually
evaluate the social cost of carbon and adjust as necessary the dollar amount found
by the legislature. In making the evaluations, the PSC must use integrated
assessment models and consider appropriate discount rates. The bill requires any
adjustment by the PSC to be consistent with the international consensus on the
social cost of carbon. The bill requires the PSC to consult with the Department of
Natural Resources in making the evaluations.
The bill also requires that, beginning no later than January 1, 2021, the PSC
must submit an annual report to the legislature describing the PSC's evaluation of
the social cost of carbon. If the PSC adjusts the dollar amount found by the
legislature, the report must also specify the social cost of carbon as adjusted by the
For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
196.025 (1h) of the statutes is created to read:
196.025 (1h) Social cost of carbon emissions.
(a) In this subsection, “social 3
cost of carbon” means a measure of the economic harms and other impacts expressed 4
in dollars that result from emitting one ton of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
(b) Subject to par. (c), the legislature finds that the social cost of carbon is $50 6
per ton of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere.
(c) In consultation with the department of natural resources, the commission 8
shall annually evaluate the social cost of carbon and adjust as necessary the dollar 9
amount found under par. (b). The evaluations shall use integrated assessment 10
models and consider appropriate discount rates. Any adjustment shall be consistent 11
with the international consensus on the social cost of carbon. No later than January 12
1, 2021, and annually thereafter, the commission shall submit to the appropriate 13
standing committees of the legislature under s. 13.172 (3) a report that describes its 14
evaluation and, if the commission adjusts the dollar amount found under par. (b), 15
specifies the social cost of carbon as adjusted by the commission.
(d) The commission shall consider the social cost of carbon in determining 17
whether to issue certificates under ss. 196.49 and 196.491 (3).
The treatment of s. 196.025 (1h) (d) first applies to applications for 20
certificates that are received on the effective date of this subsection.