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Researcher: $1 Gas Tax Would Push Green Car Sales by 27%

Economist Christopher Knittel argues that you would. He even claims that much of that tax could be indirectly reclaimed through benefits that may not be so obvious immediately.

Knittel says 70 percent of a gas tax of $1 per gallon would be returned via health benefits from reduced pollution. The effect of such a gas tax would also positively impact climate change, traffic congestion and accidents, which according to Knittel, may make it a "winner for people in economic terms alone". That $1 tax would cause purchases of fuel-efficient cars to increase by 21 percent, while sales of guzzlers would decline by 27 percent, the scientist believes.

Of course, such a proposal is rather explosive and unlikely to be understood by middle-class families who have to come up with that extra dollar per gallon and may not see a directly related return. Also, Knittel noted that there are political interests at play and such a tax would face major hurdles, resulting in massive lobbying that could shoot down such a proposal. However, he is working on that as well - Knittel is "examining" the financial rewards from their lobbying efforts.