Past Seminar

Comprehensive Tax Reform and Climate Policy

Feb 27, 2013

About the Event

Presented by Resources for the Future and the International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Resources for the Future’s Center for Climate and Electricity Policy and the Fiscal Affairs Department of the International Monetary Fund convened a panel of leading economic experts in fiscal and environmental policy to discuss the role a carbon tax might play in coming debates about how to reform the US tax code. The experts covered a range of issues, including the following:

  • opportunities presented by a carbon tax for corporate tax reform and deficit reduction;
  • the administration of the tax;
  • the appropriate initial tax level and how it might increase over time;
  • compensation for vulnerable households and energy intensive, trade exposed firms;
  • the pros and cons of a carbon tax versus other greenhouse gas mitigation policies;
  • the role of complementary technology policies; and
  • the global implications of the tax.


Ian Parry is a technical assistance advisor in the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Fiscal Affairs Department, specializing in fiscal analysis of climate change and environment issues. Before joining the IMF, Parry held the Allen V. Kneese Chair in Environmental Economics at Resources for the Future. His research focuses on climate and environmental policy, transportation policy, and energy policy. He recently co-authored the IMF book Fiscal Policy to Mitigate Climate Change: A Guide for Policymakers.


Joe Aldy is an assistant professor of public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, a nonresident fellow at Resources for the Future, and a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research. In 2009–2010, he served as the special assistant to the president for energy and environment, reporting through both the National Economic Council and the Office of Energy and Climate Change at the White House.

Larry Goulder is the Shuzo Nishihara Professor in Environmental and Resource Economics at Stanford University. He is also the Kennedy-Grossman Fellow in Human Biology at Stanford, a senior fellow at Stanford's Institute for Economic Policy Research, a university fellow at Resources for the Future, and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Kevin Hassett is the John G. Searle Senior Fellow and the director of economic policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Before joining AEI, Hassett was a senior economist at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and an associate professor of economics and finance at the Graduate School of Business of Columbia University.

Billy Pizer is an associate professor of public policy, economics, and environment at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy and a faculty fellow at Duke’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions. From 2008 to 2011, Pizer was deputy assistant secretary for environment and energy in the US Department of the Treasury, where he created and led a new office responsible for the department’s role in the domestic and international environment and energy agenda of the United States.

Rob Williams is a senior fellow and director of academic programs at Resources for the Future, an associate professor at the University of Maryland, College Park, a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a co-editor of the Journal of Public Economics. Prior to joining RFF,  Williams was an associate professor of economics at the University of Texas, Austin.


  • Ian W.H. Parry, Senior Fellow on leave at the International Monetary Fund
  • William A. Pizer, University Fellow, Resources for the Future; Susan B. King Professor and Associate Dean for Programs, Sanford School of Public Policy, and Faculty Fellow, Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, Duke University
  • Roberton C. Williams III, University Fellow, Resources for the Future
  • Joseph E. Aldy, University Fellow, Resources for the Future; Associate Professor of Public Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University