House Committee Begins Debate on Climate Bill

Washington, DC (April 21, 2009)- The House Energy and Commerce Committee began hearings to debate a bill that would cap greenhouse gas emissions at 20 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and at 83 percent by 2050. The draft proposal by Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Energy and Environment Subcommittee Chairman Ed Markey (D-MA) provides for a cap and trade program and includes measures such as efficiency standards, a national renewable electricity standard and a low-carbon fuel standard.

Bill Status:
April 21, 2009- Committee Hearings
Waxman told members of the committee that “the pace is going to accelerate” during the next four weeks to get an energy and climate change bill passed by the committee by the end of May, in order to get the bill to the full chamber for a vote by summer.
The committee held hearings on the bill April 21-24, with 54 witnesses, including Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson.
An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) analysis of the Waxman-Markey bill found that it would raise electricity prices 22 percent by the year 2030 and cost American households an average of $98 to $140 each year through 2050. “We want to work with you in finding consensus in the coming weeks, so that we can reduce our dependence on oil, create millions of new jobs in innovative energy technologies, and significantly reduce greenhouse gases,” Jackson said in testimony before the committee.
Related Resources:
Washington Post- House Panel Begins Debate on Climate Bill
AP- Obama advisers support Democratic energy bill
Wall Street Journal- EPA Previews Carbon Caps’ Impact
EPA Analysis of Waxman-Markey
House Energy and Commerce Committee