Climate Bill Passes Congress
Today The US House of Representatives has passed a climate change bill aimed at reducing the country’s emissions.
The legislation will put curbs on pollution and apply market principles to attempts to tackle global warming.
It was passed by a narrow margin of 219 votes to 212. President Barack Obama said the vote represented “enormous progress”.
But the bill still has to be passed by the US Senate before it can become law, and it faces another tough fight.
“Today the House of Representatives took historic action with the passage of the American Clean Energy and Security Act,” Mr Obama said after the vote. “It’s a bold and necessary step that holds the promise of creating new industries and millions of new jobs, decreasing our dangerous dependence on foreign oil.”
Details of the bill are as follows
· To cut emissions by 17% below the level in 2005 by 2020, then by 83% by 2050
· Imposes national limits and requires polluters to acquire emissions permits
· Permits are either free (85%) or bought at auction (15%)
· Permits can be traded, allowing major polluters to offset surplus emissions
I have worked in the USA for over 8 years and believe me when I say, this is an historic day and Congress needs to be congratulated. However, this brings America to the place where it should have been over 5 year ago and as the bill still has to pass through the Senate and given the resistance that is still ot there, it is clear that there is still much work to do!
I remain bemused and frustrated by US politics. How come your public representatives can openly get paid by and support ‘vested interest’ even though it may not be in the best public interest.
I know that we are going through our own problems over here in the UK, but the issue at stake is Obama’s Climate Bill.
The bill is aimed at giving the USA a cap and trade system. Obama has the majority in both houses and it should be a matter of course (with a few republican defections) getting the bill passed. And yet there are a number of democrats who still may scupper the deal.
The reason why?- well they are paid by the oil industry to lobby against the bill!
Climate change is our biggest challenge, without the US there will be little chance of a climate deal, the evidence is all around us and yet there is still resistance. More importantly these people seem as though they can be bought for short term personal gain!
I list their names and the money they are being paid to turn against the bill (All names and numbers thanks to the Guardian 13th May 2009 pp 15)
· John Dingell, Michigan - $457,100
· Rick Boucher, Virginia - $359,151
· Charles Melancon, Louisiana - $199,600
· Jim Matheson, Utah – $160,197
· Gene Green(!), Texas - $142,449
· Mike Ross, Arkansas - $119,743
· Mike Doyle, Pennsylvania – $110,250
· Charlie Gonzalez, Texas - $98,250
· John Barrow, Georgia – $93,743
· GK Butterfield, North Carolina, $51,050
· Baron Hill, Indiana - $46,100
· Betty Sue Sutton, Ohio - $16,600
If you know them or have access to them, please tell them they need to support the bill as it represents the only way forward, for a better and safer world with more jobs and new opportunities.
Finally, I note from the article that BP is supporting the new anti-climate PR campaign . This is BULLSHIT. How could they pretend to be so green and environmental then do this. BP, I once admired you as a leader in your field. I now know that you are full of horseshit and we can’t trust you!
May 14th 2009