Time for a carbon tax?

“I was a huge supporter of cap and trade,” said Wayne Leonard, the CEO of Entergy, a $11 billion utility company.

“We developed enormously elegant solutions, but they couldn’t get done.”

Taxing carbon emissions is the next best way to deal with the threat of global climate disruptions, he said, in part because it would give the energy industry a degree of certainty about how to deploy its capital.

“A simple tax on every one is a starting point,” Leonard said. Proceeds could be used to reduce the federal deficit or rebated to consumers.

Leonard spoke today (Nov. 9) at a launch event for the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, a new organization that is succeeding the Pew Center on Global Climate Change. Eileen Claussen, who has directed the Pew Center for 13 years, will lead the new group, which has raised money from three so-called strategic partners — Entergy, HP and Shell — as well as Alcoa Foundation, Bank of America, GE, The Energy Foundation, Duke Energy, and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Pew is no longer a backer.

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Ted Roosevelt is lonely

I was headed out for a run one morning in April during FORTUNE’s Brainstorm Green conference in Laguna Niguel, CA, when I spotted Theodore Roosevelt IV jogging on the beach. Having a good run? I asked him. Yes, he told me, and he’d been swimming, too, in the big waves that crash onto the beach and draw hordes of surfers every day.

Legacy matters, I guess. Ted Roosevelt, as he’s known, is the great-grandson of our 26th president, Theodore Roosevelt, who was famous for his love of what he called “the strenuous life“—he boxed, rode horses, fought in the Spanish-American war, went big-game hunting and explored the Amazon. Ted Roosevelt, who is 68, played football at Groton, played ice hockey and rugby and rowed on the lightweight crew at Harvard; after graduation, he served two tours of duty as a Navy SEAL in Vietnam.

Like TR, Ted is a Republican, a conservationist and an independent thinker–which makes him part of a dying breed of moderate WASPy Republicans who are fiscally conservative and socially progressive.

Ted argues that environmental protection is good for America’s economic growth and strength. He describes climate change is “this century’s greatest challenge.” He believes that nature is worth preserving, not just because of its usefulness to humans but for its own sake. [click to continue…]