Statement by Frances Beinecke, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) on the Introduction of America's Climate Security Act by Senators Joe Lieberman and John Warner
“The introduction and planned markup of America’s Climate Security Act by Senators Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and John Warner (R-Va.) represents an important step forward in the overdue process to enact comprehensive, mandatory global warming legislation. Committee consideration of this legislation will help move us toward the substantial reductions in global warming pollution we need to protect our climate. The bill also recognizes the need to direct proceeds from the pollution allowance market to important policy objectives, including promoting clean energy solutions, protecting the poor and other consumers, ensuring a just transition for workers in affected industries, and preventing impacts abroad that lead to conflicts and threats to security.
“We cannot afford to wait any longer to cap and reduce U.S. emissions of global warming pollutants. Each day we delay means more global warming pollution, more investment in high-emitting energy sources, and more global warming impacts. We are pleased by the bipartisan commitment of the Chairman and Ranking Member of the subcommittee with jurisdiction to report global warming legislation for consideration by the full Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in the immediate weeks to come.
“Capping carbon will lead investment to a clean energy future which will not only help reduce global warming but also improve our health, reduce medical bills, increase energy security, and create thousands of good new jobs.
“Although this bill is a strong start, NRDC supports changes that would improve the bill by ensuring that emission reductions keep pace with the science, and by reducing free allocations and directing additional resources to provide more support for critical program features, including consumer and low-income protections, safeguards for affected workers, and faster deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions.
“We applaud the leadership on this critical issue provided by Senator Boxer, who Chairs the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and look forward to working closely with her, Senators Lieberman and Warner, and all the other members of the Committee, to develop sound, bipartisan legislation that can be considered as soon as possible by the full U.S. Senate.”