Green Energy, Politics — September 30, 2009 at 9:04 am

Meanwhile, back in the Senate: a decent climate change bill!


Today is the day that Senators John Kerry and Barbara Boxer will release the Senate version of the so-called Cap-and-Trade bill, their version of the bill Representatives Waxman and Markey got passed in the House earlier this year. And, surprise, surprise (really!), it’s stronger than the House bill.

The Washington Post got a sneak peak at a nearly-completed version of it and the news appears to be good.

This legislation appears to do a few things the Waxman-Markey bill did not:

  • Make it easier for businesses to purchase carbon offsets by increasing the number of offsets by 40%
  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% from 2005 levels by 2020 and 83% by 2050
  • Help ensure that the price of carbon will not exceed $28 per ton (the “carbon collar”)
  • Emphasize transportation efficiency
  • Ensure that the EPA continues to be able to regulate the emissions from coal-burning power plants

It’s getting some very good reviews.

Daniel J. Weiss, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, said the provisions amount to “a safety net to ensure that cleanup costs remain affordable. The draft Boxer-Kerry bill provides a solid foundation for Senate action on clean-energy-jobs legislation.”

During a week only half over but already filled with gloomy news from the Senate, the Kerry-Boxer bill appears to be a bright spot.

I encourage you to work with your local branch of Repower America or the 1Sky campaign to help get this legislation passed.

I made about 50 calls myself last night.

I’m just sayin’…