An all-star lineup of economists, from Alan Greenspan to Paul Volcker, is endorsing a plan to combat climate change by slapping a tax on greenhouse gas emissions and then distributing the revenue to American households.

All living former Federal Reserve chairs, several Nobel Prize winners and previous leaders of the president’s Council of Economic Advisers have signed on to a statement asserting that a robust, gradually rising carbon tax is “the most cost-effective lever to reduce carbon emissions at the...