It would be nice to think that the much awaited Climate Change Bill, actually called The American Power Act, were just that: a powerful act towards mitigating environmental damage to our country and its resources. But that may be wishful thinking.
"This bill is more industry-friendly, very different from the bill that passed in the House," stated Washington Post's reporter covering the issue, who says this Climate Bill "is an Energy Bill." The Act was introduced today by U.S. Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT).
For one, this bill, backed by zero Republicans, makes expanded drilling possible in Gulf of Mexico, Alaska and South Eastern U.S. It would not open up drilling off the Coast of California.
The American Power Act also provides R&D funding for carbon capture and sequestration, a technology that the coal and oil industries are fond of pointing to as a means of lessening their industries' environmental impact but which is as yet an unproven technology, for the most part. The Bill also provides for a Cap And Trade system for the Utilities.
The photo was taken in the Vanderhoef Studio Theater at the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts in Davis, California, 5/12/10.
Governor Schwarzenegger had this to say about it today,"I am encouraged by this new effort by Senators Kerry and Lieberman to address the challenges of clean energy and climate change at the federal level with a comprehensive energy policy. California has been an unparalleled leader in clean energy, pioneering policies that have benefited the entire nation, and we must be able to continue our important, groundbreaking work that will both improve the environment and help our economy.
I continue to believe we need a bipartisan, national climate change commitment that will reduce our dependence on oil, protect our environment, grow our economy and put Americans back to work. I look forward to reviewing the American Power Act and working with Congress and the Obama Administration to ensure it builds on the progress states have made, like here in California."
Governor spoke today at a University of California (UC) Davis Graduate School of Management Dean Steven C. Currall as part of E3: Economic Prosperity, Energy and the Environment -- A Roundtable to Set the Agenda on Clean and Sustainable Paths to Economic Prosperity, an event hosted by The CTO Forum's Energy Council and UC Davis.
Noteworthy is Minister of The Environment, Canada, Jim Prentice's response to the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: "I think it's always been clear that the oil sands provide a safe, stable, secure supply of energy and they need to be developed in an environmentally responsible way. The risks associated with the oil sands, the environmental risks, are significantly different than, and probably less than the kind of risks associated with offshore drilling,” he said."But we still have to be on our game in terms of the environmental regulations for the oil sands as well."
The business supporters backing the American Power Act include: Honeywell, Dow Corning, Duke Energy and the Edison Electric Institute, BP and Shell. BP is the oil company involved in the Gulf Oil Spill.