NAM Key Votes Against H.R. 2454, the Waxman-Markey Bill

The National Association of Manufacturers has today sent a “Key Vote” letter to the U.S. House of Representatives urging a vote against H.R. 2454, the American Clean Energy and Security Act.

These recommendations are arrived at by members of the NAM’s Key Vote Advisory Committee, which represents a cross-section of member companies, large and small.

The letter was signed by Jay Timmons, the NAM’s Executive Vice President. It is available online here.

Passage of the bill would damage U.S. global competitiveness and violates the NAM’s principles for reduction of greenhouse gases. The heart of the letter:

The NAM understands the importance of environmental stewardship and we commend House leaders and members of the Energy and Commerce Committee for their efforts to address this complex issue. The NAM supports provisions of the bill that would: expand research and development for clean energy technologies; fund the deployment of carbon capture and sequestration projects; support greater utilization of energy efficiency across the economy; and provide worker training for clean energy industries.

Our member companies are committed to pursuing reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, provided that any commitments made by the United States are mirrored by comparable commitments by our trading partners, are based on sound science and costeffectiveness, and are applied equally throughout the economy. Additionally, in order to ensure a competitive manufacturing industry, a diverse, reliable, affordable and abundant energy mix is essential.

While we support a number of the provisions of the legislation, after careful review, our concerns remain fundamentally unchanged from the initial draft. H.R. 2454 will regulate and add cost to every one of our members, which already bear the burden of local, state and federal compliance cost through the Clean Air Act. Moreover, it allows Congress to select winners and losers through the distribution of allocations to industries.

Overall, the NAM official principles support the development and deployment of competitive clean energy technologies and robust energy efficiency improvements; however, our members do not support mandates on the use of specific, economically uncompetitive technologies. The NAM supports policies that recognize the robust voluntary actions of industry to reduce energy intensity and improve efficiency to promote emissions reductions throughout the economy. Additionally, the NAM is concerned that the legislation does not provide for fully verifiable and quantifiable international emission offsets.

The NAM opposes H.R. 2454’s nationwide cap-and-trade program because it violates the following policy principles established by our member companies: 

* Does not pre-empt conflicting state and local climate change laws and/or regulations;

* Omits reliable “safety valve” provisions that are key to ensuring cost containment;

* Is limited in scope and does not include all sectors of the economy;

* Unnecessarily increases demand on natural gas, which is a vital feedstock to many manufacturers;

* Does not adequately promote global participation; and

* Creates a multitude of conflicting and duplicative regulations for manufacturers.

Manufacturers are committed to working with Congress to establish sensible and responsible federal climate change policies that reduce GHG emissions, but these policies must maintain a competitive playing field for American companies. H.R. 2454 fails this test, and as such we oppose its passage. 


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