Thursday, October 1, 2009

Senate Cap And Trade Bill Faces Uphill Battles

Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman John Kerry and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer unveiled an 800 page partially complete draft of their cap and trade climate change proposal today, but the measure faces strong opposition even within their own party. Democratic Senators Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia and Kent Conrad of North Dakota expressed objections to the bill's requirement of a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, a 3% increase over the terms of the measure passed this summer in the House. According to coal state Senator Rockefeller, the higher goal "is unrealistic and harmful -- it is simply not enough time to deploy the carbon capture and storage and energy efficiency technologies we need. Period."

Democratic Senators Kent Conrad, Byron Dorgan and Maria Cantwell object to the measure's lack of provision for oversight of the carbon allowance market, fearing market manipulation harmful to their states' argicultural interests. Other democrats object to the fact that the draft includes no details yet on how free and auction based carbon credits will be allocated among businesses in various segments of the economy which will be affected wither by the carbon emission restrictions or the higher enegry costs resulting from emission caps.
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