Compromise climate bill possible
Moderate House Democrats circulated a watered-down version of a sweeping climate-change-prevention bill Friday as lawmakers moved closer to a compromise on a proposal to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
Meanwhile, members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee went "back to the future," turning to Democratic and Republican leaders of the '90s, former Vice President Al Gore and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, to debate the merits of energy measures that will likely dominate the next century.
Rep. Rick Boucher, Virginia Democrat, the de facto leader of the committee's moderate Democrats, circulated a list of amendments designed to ease regulations outlined in the climate bill pending in committee and met with House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman, California Democrat, to discuss the legislation.
The four-page list, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Times, proposed to answer a key question not detailed in the bill drafted by Mr. Waxman and Rep. Edward J. Markey, Massachusetts Democrat: How much should businesses pay to reduce carbon emissions?
Under the proposal, electric utilities would be given 40 percent of the allowances created through a "cap-and-trade" system that would require companies to hold one allowance for each ton of carbon dioxide they emit.