During a Friday Google+ hangout session, President Barack Obama conceded that his policies to address climate change will raise energy costs, a fact that could prove uncomfortable for Democrats in areas reliant on fossil fuel power plants:
I have to tell you that there are some Democrats, for example, who represent states or districts that are heavily reliant on old power plants and are more heavily manufacturing based. And the truth is that if you produce power using old power plants, you’re going to be emitting more carbon, but, to upgrade those plants means energy is going to be a little more expensive, at least on the front end.
This is not the first time Obama has admitted to supporting price-raising energy policies. In 2008, then-candidate Obama said he was fine with soaring energy prices so long as they helped curb green house gas emissions. “Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket,” he said.
Obama supporters in 2008 also applauded the prospect of rising gas prices because they would “force us to think about changing the culture to create more emphasis on mass transportation.” Following the sustained applause, Obama praised Europe for its rail system.
And Obama’s former Energy Secretary Steven Chu infamously told the Wall Street Journal “somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.”
A gallon of gas now costs double what it did on the first day of Obama’s first term.