Congressman Pete Olson

Representing the 22nd District of Texas

Congressman Olson and Local Leaders Discuss Impacts of Cap-and-Trade on Texas Agriculture

February 18, 2010
Press Release

Rep. Pete Olson today was joined by local elected officials and members of the agriculture industry to discuss the impacts of proposed carbon cap-and-trade legislation on Texas agriculture.  Participants in the event included several local farmers and ranchers, as well as State Sen. Joan Huffman, State Rep. Randy Weber, State Rep. John Zerwas, State Rep. Charlie Howard, Mayor Hilmar Moore, City of Richmond, Fort Bend County Farm Bureau, Central Fort Bend Chamber Alliance, Needville Chamber of Commerce, Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Fort Bend County, South Texas Cotton & Grain Association, Fort Bend County Rice Task Force, Rosenberg Tractor and the Farm Service Agency.

Rep. Pete Olson said, “The cap-and-trade legislation passed by the House, which I opposed, would not only severely increase energy costs for every Texan, but would also devastate the agriculture industry.  So not only would Texans have to pay more in energy costs, but the cost of their food would increase as well - not to mention the crippling job losses that would face the second largest industry in Texas. I will continue to oppose measures like cap-and-trade that do nothing but create an environment of uncertainty for businesses and increase costs on all Americans.”

Carolyn Manville, Fort Bend County Farm Bureau President said, “The Fort Bend County Farm Bureau appreciates the support Congressman Pete Olson has shown in our farming and ranching community and their concerns.”

Jeff Nunley, Executive Director, South Texas Cotton & Grain Association said, “We appreciate Congressman Olson taking time to meet with farmers and ranchers in his district to discuss agricultural issues related to climate legislation.  It's clear that cap & trade legislation would have a devastating effect on our farmers.  It's heartening to know that Congressman Olson is engaged on these issues and is working in the interest of producers in his district and the state of Texas.”

Ken Hodges, Associate Legislative Director, Texas Farm Bureau said, “"Regardless of the issue or the industry, having elected officials interested in what those most directly involved have to say leads to better policies and solutions."

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) testified before Congress on impacts of cap-and-trade on agriculture. The following information is from that testimony:

Costs of fuel, oil, and electricity will increase by 22%
Puts 59 million acres of cropland and pasture out of production by 2050
Corn production will decrease by 22%
Soybean production will drop by 29%
Beef production will decline by 10%
Pork production will sink by 23% 
Estimated to drive up food prices by 5%

Cap and Trade TX-22 Specific (per Heritage Foundation)
Job Loss in 2012: 4,891 (the first year that cap and trade would be in effect)
Average Job Loss per Year from 2012-2035: 3,584

Cap and Trade Effect on Texas (per Susan Combs, Texas State Comptroller)

Job Loss In 2012:  135,000 to 277,000 jobs
Job Losses by Industry Statewide
• Oil and Gas Extraction 190,440
• Chemical Manufacturing 73,496
• Mining and Support Activities for Mining 157,046
• Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing 24,980
• Increased cost to Household Goods

The average Texas household could pay up to an extra $1,136 on household goods and services over a year with a total potential cost to Texas families of $6.9 billion.

Major Spending Categories                                                         Annual Cost Increase
Health Care                                                                                       $203
Housing                                                                                            $195
Groceries and Dining                                                                      $189
Transportation (gas, auto-related purchases)                            $130
Recreation, Travel and Entertainment                                         $109
Legal and Financial Services                                                         $72
Household Utilities                                                                         $58
Clothes, Shoes and Accessories                                                  $57
Furniture and Household Supplies                                              $55
Religious and Welfare Activities                                                 $27
Education and Research                                                                $25
Personal Care                                                                                   $16
Total                                                                                                  $1,136