Climate Legislation in the House?

This post is by Carol Andress, Economic Development Specialist at Environmental Defense.

Climate Vote 2007

This post is part of a series on the work of the Environmental Defense Action Fund to enact an effective climate law. You can help by writing to Congress.

Last night’s committee passage of the Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act (CSA) means that the bill now can be considered by the full Senate – an important step towards enacting national climate legislation. But for a bill to become law in this country it has to be passed by both the House and Senate, and the House is lagging behind. (See our previous post for more on the legislative process.)

So while we celebrate last night’s Senate victory, we still have our work cut out for us in the House. The House Energy Commerce Committee has been tied up with the energy bill, and has not yet circulated a proposal on climate legislation. Now that a vote on the energy bill is imminent, it’s time for House leaders to turn their attention.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman John Dingell have both pledged to vote on global warming legislation this Congress, and they’ve taken some useful first steps. There have been some instructive hearings, and Dingell’s staff has been working on a series of white papers outlining the framework for their approach.

But the Energy and Commerce Committee has not yet circulated a draft bill, and it’s unclear when this will happen. There is not yet a timetable for when the committee will take up climate legislation, and the Senate is unlikely to schedule a floor vote on CSA without a House bill moving out of committee.

The House must move quickly in January to ensure that national climate legislation is passed this year. The longer we wait, the deeper emissions cuts will have to be, increasing costs, and increasing the risk of passing the tipping point after which catastrophic climate change becomes inevitable.

Speaker Pelosi, Rep. Dingell and other key House leaders must make passing a climate bill a top legislative priority in 2008.

This entry was posted in Climate Change Legislation. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

One Comment

  1. Posted January 8, 2010 at 2:56 am | Permalink

    i was reading something similar on another website that i was researching. I will be sure to look around more. thanks…