A bill sponsored by Senators on both sides of the aisle is up for review, but whether it pays more than lip service to pursuing clean energy remains to be seen:
On Monday, Sens. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) will launch their bipartisan climate and clean energy jobs bill. I’m quite certain there will be something in it to dissatisfy everyone.
On the other hand, has Congress ever passed a significant bill that didn’t dissatisfy everyone, particularly on the environment? We haven’t had a major piece of clean-air legislation for almost two decades now. The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (EPA history here), which ultimately passed by large margins, put in place a cap-and-trade system for acid rain pollution, but didn’t end the grandfathering of old coal plants. And so they burn on.
No bill that could pass Congress right now or in the immediate future would be sufficient to put us on the path to stabilizing the world at 2°C. We simply aren’t sufficiently desperate to do what is needed, which is nonstop deployment of a staggering amount of low-carbon energy, including efficiency, for the rest of the century.
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Editor’s note: Article by Joseph Romm. Originally published by our friends at Grist.org. Grist is a media organization that has been dishing out environmental news and commentary with a humorous twist since 1999. Be sure to visit them and say hi, and follow Grist on Twitter, too!