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Sen. Murkowski's CLEAR option on carbon regulation

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and 35 other senators yesterday introduced a bill that would strip the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating carbon. I understand their concerns about the impact EPA action would have on the economy. But pulling the reigns on the revived agency isn't the answer. Proactive congressional action is.

Not long after assuming office last year, President Obama made it clear that he believes the best way to regulate greenhouse gas emissions is for Congress to pass a comprehensive climate change bill. At the same, to give the House and Senate needed incentive to take action, Obama unleashed the EPA to look at regulating carbon under the Clean Air Act. Clearly, the threat of faceless bureaucrats pulling the strings on a significant swath of the nation's economy wasn't enough. Only the House has passed a climate bill. And a deeply flawed one at that.

"We're being presented with a false choice between unacceptable legislation and unacceptable regulations," Murkowski said yesterday. No, what's false is the notion that there isn't a common-sense bill on Capitol Hill worthy of consideration. Such a measure exists. It's called the Carbon Limits and Energy for America's Renewal or CLEAR Act sponsored by Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine). In short, it would establish a cap-and-rebate system. A declining cap on greenhouse gas emissions would be set. Pollution permits would be auctioned to industry. And 75 percent of the proceeds would be rebated to the American people through monthly checks on an equal per capita basis. That could mean $1,000 returned to a family of four over the course of a year.

“Make no mistake, if Congress allows this to happen there will be severe consequences,” Murkowski said of the EPA's moves. Congress doesn't have to "allow this to happen." It could give serious consideration to the Cantwell-Collins bill. If passed it would finally put the United States in a leadership position on climate change.

By Jonathan Capehart  | January 22, 2010; 8:05 AM ET
Categories:  Capehart  | Tags:  Jonathan Capehart  
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Comments

The global climate faction, wholly endorsed by the mainstream media, is at it again, As if their efforts have not been debunked and their embarassment not complete enough to destroy their credibility. I hope the senate garners enough votes to take this issue out of the hands of the incompetant bureaucrats in the administration.

Posted by: shangps | January 22, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Oooh Socialism. Can't wait to get the "$1000 rebate check" like they get in Alaska. Cap-and-rebate vs cap-and-trade -- one is socialism disguised as refund and the other is counteracting effects of pollution. Small minded people think in the here-and-now not long-term.

Posted by: hadelaide | January 22, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Anthropogenic global warming is the hoax of the ages. That is becoming more and more apparent every day.

Carbon dioxide is as necessary to life on earth as air and water, yet there are idiots among us who think it is a pollutant.

The efforts of democrats to "reform" health care was nothing more than a tax on existing. The effort of democrats to "fix" global warming is nothing more than a tax on breathing.

Posted by: rocks1 | January 22, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Republicans are not going to make any compromise because they and their followers are convinced that global warming is some commie plot. Besides there primary goal is to destroy Obama.

rocks1: "Carbon dioxide is as necessary to life on earth as air and water"

Carbon dioxide is absorbed by plants, but they can only absorb so much. We are now producing more than can be absorbed. As you point out water is essential for life, but when it's pouring through the streets of New Orleans it's a hazard.


Posted by: sjpatejak | January 22, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Lock her in the garage with the engine running. Don't woory, it's just science. She won't choke.

Posted by: jckdoors | January 22, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

So global climate change is a hoax and becoming more discredited every day? And CO2 is harmless because it is an essential building block of life? How do these loons even figure out how to turn on their computers? It is simple political ideology versus science. And yes, an overwhelming number (90-95%) of real scientists do believe in man-made global climate change.

Posted by: wilsonjmichael | January 22, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Carbon dioxide is as necessary to life on earth as air and water, yet there are idiots among us who think it is a pollutant.

---------------------------------------

Yes, but too much of it makes it clog up the atmosphere and causes the earth to get hotter, thus creating erratic weather patterns, rising ocean levels, etc.

Your argument is like saying red wine is good for your heart. Yes one glass a day is, but drinking a whole bottle everyday, not so much.

Posted by: jjj141 | January 22, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Seems to me that Global Warming "Science" has been called into question as of late by legitimate questions...ie how much has the data been misinterpretid and so on...

Also, Mr WilsonJ...I heard somewhere that 9523427% of the statistics that people quote are made up...think that's true? Seems to me that all of the scientists that I know personally tell me that we just don't know enough to say whether it(global warming) is man-made or not.

If we are going to have another CO2 debate, let's talk about something that could possibly be legitimate, like ocean-acidification.

Posted by: wlpuck | January 22, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

You I remember when Americans would take a problem like climate change, and would come up with solutions and become world leaders. I guess with all the special interests in Washington, I guess those days are over. Or Congress, bought and paid for by big oil, amongst others.

Posted by: jjj141 | January 22, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

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