The Good News:
There's Finally a Senate Bill in Committee, that hopes to do something about Global Warming! The bill America's Climate Security Act of 2007, sponsors Senators Joe Lieberman and John Warner.
The bill would impose emission limits on electric utility, transportation, and manufacturing industries.
Between 2005 and 2012: The bill caps emissions at 5200 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent, the estimated levels during 2005
The Bad News:
The Lieberman Bill does NOT go FAR enough, FAST enough, and is a “fig leaf” offering to Industry, which seeks to replace a competing Carbon Cap Bill that does what's scientifically needed …
The original Carbon Cap bill Global Warming Pollution Reduction Act of 2007, sponsors by Senators Bernie Sanders and Barbara Boxer.
Is this just more “Business as Usual” in Congress?
Dr. Brent Blackwelder, President, Friends of the Earth Action (http://www.foeaction…) explains it this way:
The Lieberman-Warner bill simply does not reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the rates that scientists say are needed, and it includes massive giveaways to corporate polluters.
It's a good thing Friends of the Earth Action are willing to put their Money where there Rhetoric is! They have just released a radio Ad in Iowa, which calls for stopping the “faux” Bill, and endorses John Edwards for taking “a courageous stand against the bill and special interests” behind it:
Friends of the Earth Radio Ad – Now running in Iowa
Friends of the Earth Ad – Fix or Ditch: Transcript (pdf)
Hillary Clinton recently announced a plan on energy and global warming. It’s a good plan. But now, it’s time for more than talk.
In the Senate Clinton’s committee is considering a bill that’s a breathtaking giveaway to corporate polluters. The Lieberman-Warner bill gives away $750 billion to oil, gas, and utility companies … the very companies polluting our air and causing global warming.
One candidate, John Edwards, has already taken a courageous stand against the bill and the special interests backing it. For too long the lobbyists and corporate polluters have set our nation’s energy policy.
Call Senator Clinton and tell her we’ve had enough of corporate polluters and billion dollar giveaways. Tell her its time to fix – or ditch – Lieberman-Warner.
Taking a Real Stand on the Issues – Priceless!
Now back to the story of these Battling Bills …
What is the story on this Lieberman-Warner bill?
Friends of the Earth statement:
Lieberman-Warner Global Warming Bill Needs Major Improvements (pdf)
Global warming legislation introduced by Senators Joe Lieberman and John Warner should not be enacted as currently written. The legislation fails to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to levels demanded by science and rewards polluting industries to an unprecedented degree.
Fails to solve global warming
this bill takes a long time to get started and sets an ultimate goal that falls short of the scientific mandate. …
Giveaways to corporate polluters
The legislation gives away $436 billion worth of pollution permits to corporate polluters in the coal and fossil fuels industries. …
Fails to fund the right priorities
But the bill sends hundreds of billions of dollars worth of these revenues back to the coal industry—this is in addition to the giveaways noted above.
Instead of rewarding polluters, auction revenues should be used for:
– Energy efficiency and clean energy: Using energy more efficiently and promoting clean sources of energy, such as wind and solar, can lead to big emissions cuts.
– Offsetting the bill’s costs: This bill should provide assistance to lower-income Americans to help them cope with increased energy costs.
– Adaptation: Poor communities in the U.S. and the developing world need help to prepare for the impacts of climate change, such as droughts, floods, and fires.
– Clean transportation: Funds from this legislation can encourage cleaner cars and public transportation, changing the way Americans travel and commute.
Global warming and political will —
The Lieberman-Warner bill is NOT strong enough to do the job
Posted by Senator Bernie Sanders – 14 Nov 2007
Bernie Sanders Statment:
As a member of both the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and the Energy and Natural Resources Committee it is my view that the time is long overdue for Congress to go beyond deal making and “politics as usual” in addressing the crisis of global warming. …
While the Lieberman-Warner cap and trade bill is a step forward, it goes nowhere near far enough in creating the policies that the scientific community says must be developed if we are to avert a planetary catastrophe. …
Here are some of my concerns with the Lieberman-Warner bill:
1) Lieberman-Warner, under the very best projections, provides a 66 percent reduction [by 2050, and not the recommended 80%]
2) this legislation allows major polluters to continue emitting greenhouse gases for free until 2036. … The “right to pollute” should not be given away for up to 24 years.
3) this bill provides a massive amount of corporate welfare to industries which have been major emitters of greenhouse gasses while requiring minimal performance standards and accountability.
According to a report by Friends of the Earth, the auction and allocation processes of the bill COULD generate up to $3.6 trillion dollars over a 38 year period.
The time is late, and if Congress is serious about preventing irreversible damage to our planet because of global warming we need to get moving in a bold and focused manner. And we can do it.
Senator: Global Warming Bill Needs Work
By H. JOSEF HEBERT – Oct 26, 2007
Other senators have argued that the bill doesn't go far enough to achieve the greenhouse gas reductions needed — along with actions by other countries — to avoid serious global temperature increases later this century.
At a hearing on Wednesday, Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., said an analysis by an environmental group suggested that overall heat-trapping emissions would be cut by only 13 percent by 2020 and 51 percent by 2050 because of loopholes and the fact that the bill does not apply to all emission sources.
“Work remains to be done to make this legislation stronger,” said Lautenberg.
WOW, loopholes, giveaways, corporate welfare, ignoring the Science — HOW can this be?
It's just “another day in the office” in DC, where Industry Lobbyists have more clout than the People, in SO many cases. Maybe Edwards is right about the System being broken — ya think?
Here is a Watchdog group looking at the back-story behind the “faux” Lieberman-Warner Bill:
Center for Media and Democracy
Is This the Best We Can Do For Global Warming?
America's Climate Security Act of 2007
Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and John Warner's (R-VA) cap-and-trade bill, the America's Climate Security Act of 2007 was marked up favorably by the Private Solutions to Global Warming Subcommittee by a vote of 4-3. It will now move to the full Senate Environment and Public Works Committee for a vote before going to the Senate floor.
The bill would reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by about 63 percent below present levels by 2050 through setting limits on the emissions that manufacturers and utilities can release. It would also establish a carbon-trade market to encourage polluters to clean up their operation in the name of profit, but it contains loopholes that would give away many of the carbon credits instead of selling them at auction, thus severely weakening the incentives for reducing pollution.
Another bill that has been competing for traction with Lieberman-Warner calls for mandatory reduction of 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050, closer to what many consider to be the scientific consensus as to what needs to be done to avoid the worst effects of global warming. And that bill would sell the carbon credit rather than give them away.
[ This competing GW Sanders-Boxer Bill is the Global Warming Pollution Reduction Act of 2007 — sponsored by Senators Bernie Sanders and Barbara Boxer, is comprehensive and true to the Science, and before the very same Committee: Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Hillary Clinton is a deciding member of this Committee. What will she do? ]
According to the Innovation Online blog, “Cambridge Energy Research Associates recently surveyed utility executives and found that utility companies will face major risks and changes from fuel and capital costs, environmental mandates and potential mergers but the top two business risks are price changes and a carbon mandate.” And guess what current member of Congress received the most campaign money from electric utilities in the last election cycle. You've got it — Joe Lieberman!
It's impossible to prove that Lieberman has pushed forward his version of a global warming bill as a quid-pro-quo-style political favor to his campaign financers. But Lieberman knew that Congress would inevitably pass some kind of global warming bill this session, and its pretty suspicious that he, the senator with the most electric utilities money, would be the one pushing for the bill that puts the least possible amount of financial pressure on the industry.
The Lieberman sure knows how to work the system, it seems. He must be taking lessons from Hillary these days:
A Gallup Poll released this week found 73 percent of Democratic voters say they favor a presidential candidate who advocates changing the system, while only 26 percent opted for experience.
In a new campaign speech, and in ads airing in Iowa and New Hampshire, Clinton tries to bridge the two. She argues that only a president well-schooled in the ways of Washington can achieve the results voters seek.
“I've learned you bring change by working in the system established by the Constitution. You can't pretend the system doesn't exist,” the New York senator said in New Hampshire, her husband at her side.
Lobbyists were Established by the Constitution ??? …, yeah right Senator Clinton !
I guess, I missed that lesson in civics class !
Perhaps some Constitutional Scholars can enlighten us, on this defense of the broken system in Washington DC.
John Edwards says We must End this System, NOT Defend it!
John Edwards – End the Game
John Edwards – Who We're Fighting For
And the FoE of New Hampshire likes Edwards so much that they are willing to put THEIR money to work in Iowa. I guess they're tired of “Business as Usual” too, as many progressives are! Maybe taking a Stand on Issues DOES MATTER ???
Friends of the Earth Action today called on all presidential candidates to join John Edwards in taking a firm stance against the hundreds of billions of dollars of giveaways to corporate polluters in the Lieberman-Warner global warming legislation being considered in the U.S. Senate.
“We challenge all of the candidates running for president, particularly those serving in the Senate, to join John Edwards in taking a firm stance against the massive giveaways to corporate polluters currently included in the Lieberman-Warner bill,” Friends of the Earth Action President Brent Blackwelder said. “They should also demand that the legislation reduce emissions at the rate required by science.
It's time for the People to Take Their Country Back!
The Good News:
More PEOPLE than ever realize Global Warming is a critical problem!
The Bad News:
More LOBBYIST's than ever (who Hillary says are People too) have taken a “vested interest” in “helping” to re-write that Global Warming legislation!
Will our corporate-sponsored Senators, just sit back and just let this happen? Time will tell, once again …
Can Lobbyists really write legislation? … aaah dah! … is Lieberman really a Chicken-hawk? LOL! It so sad, but True.