The pay-for to fund EPA’s Superfund program is a key component of the bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure deal, which is expected to pass the Senate. The tax has survived thus far, despite some dissent from industry advocates and prominent lawmakers.
The per-ton excise tax would target 42 chemicals, critical minerals and metallic elements, including substances like benzene and chlorine, with revenue directed into the fund created by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act. It’s expected to generate $14.4 billion over 10 years.
The inclusion of the tax is the result of a yearslong effort from lawmakers and advocates following the expiration of the tax more than two decades ago. Key for including the tax was desperation from Republican negotiators to find pay-fors. Lawmakers now argue that manufacturers will reap vast benefits from the legislation in exchange for a little pain.
“They’re going to do so well on this, because they’re making the products that are essential to everything we’re doing,” Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), one of the Senate negotiators, told E&E News.