House Climate Bill Aims to Please Environmental and Business Interests
House Democrats introduced an ambitious climate bill yesterday aimed at pleasing both environmental and business interests, even as Senate leaders acknowledged that the party faces serious challenges in trying to pass a carbon limit in the near future.
The 648-page "discussion draft," crafted by House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry A. Waxman (Calif.) and Rep. Edward J. Markey (Mass.), chairman of the subcommittee on energy and the environment, would create the first federal requirements to boost energy efficiency and ensure that a quarter of the nation's electricity comes from renewable sources. It also would cut the nation's greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent from 2005 levels by 2020, and by 80 percent by mid-century.
The measure also would provide incentives for industries that will be hit the hardest by a limit on emissions, including a $10 billion fund to promote carbon capture and storage technology and a provision that would reward carbon-intensive manufacturers that face global competition if they operate more efficiently than their overseas counterparts.