Environmental Defense Statement On McCain-Lieberman Climate Legislation Reintroduction

On May 26th, Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Joe Lieberman (D-CT) reintroduced their Climate Stewardship Act, renamed the Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act. The following statement may be attributed to Environmental Defense president Fred Krupp.

"On global warming, we're like the Red Sox going into last year's World Series — history says we won't win, but actually we've got great momentum, and we like our chances. A choir of voices is now demanding action on climate change: CEOs, state governments, faith leaders, and more all want our most serious environmental problem addressed.

"Environmental Defense has long believed that a market-based cap is the best approach to manage climate change. A cap-and-trade program is the only approach that will fully engage both the American economy and the American entrepreneur in meeting the challenge of actually reducing emissions.

"The reintroduction of the Climate Stewardship and Innovation Act is another sign of the growing momentum toward action on climate change. The Act's newly added provisions to jump-start low carbon technologies may speed up negotiations over what type of action the Senate will take on climate change.

"The market-based cap, as introduced by Senators McCain and Lieberman in 2003, 2004 and 2005, is the best way to drive a successful shift toward deployment of energy technologies that reduce carbon emissions. The market-based cap will realign the market to reward low-carbon technologies; the cap will drive the deployment.

"In our judgment, the Act's new proposals to spur technology deployment, linked to the cap on carbon emissions, are generally appropriate to help push the marketplace to make the transition to low-carbon technologies. These technology provisions will help overcome the barrier of market acceptance, and the market-based cap will knock it down.

"Environmental Defense continues to be concerned that several questions about nuclear power generation–safety, security, nonproliferation and waste–have not been answered sufficiently to support deployment. Environmental Defense believes that those tough questions can be answered. We will work with the sponsors to strengthen provisions intended to discover those answers. While Environmental Defense is concerned that the sections on nuclear power move too fast too soon, climate change has become such an urgent problem that the nation needs to reassess all low-carbon energy alternatives, including nuclear generation."

To learn more about the bill and climate change, please visit www.undoit.org

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