New Global Warming Bill Signals Momentum Growing for Effective Reductions

WASHINGTON (January 12, 2007) – Today Sens Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) will introduce the Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act of 2007. The new bill contains a “declining cap” provision that cuts emissions steadily over time, managing costs while effectively reducing pollution.
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) proposed such a declining cap in the November, 2006 issue of Science. The Lieberman-McCain bill caps the global warming emissions of the electric power, industrial, transportation, and commercial sectors of the economy at year 2004 levels by 2012. It then lowers that cap steadily, to cut total U.S. emissions by two-thirds from year 2004 levels by 2050.
Below is the statement of NRDC President Frances G. Beinecke:
“This first global warming bill of the new Congress shows our leaders in Washington are declaring that the era of delay has ended and the year of action has begun. They know what the American public already knows: to protect the climate, the United States must start cutting global warming pollution now and reduce emissions steadily over the coming decades.
“While the bill’s environmental objectives are a strong advance, one provision remains misguided. Despite the provision of billions of dollars in subsidies to the nuclear industry in the 2005 Energy Policy Act and over $85 billion in historical subsidies, the bill introduced today contains additional nuclear subsidies that NRDC continues to oppose. Additional giveaways to an industry made up of some of the world’s wealthiest firms are neither necessary nor warranted.
“NRDC, on behalf of its 1.2 million members and online activists, will work with the authors of this bill and other strong global warming proposals to produce an urgently needed law that will restore American leadership in this vital arena.”