Bipartisan Unhappiness with Boxer-Kerry Cap-and-Blanks Bill

By October 1, 2009Energy, Global Warming

Blanks because there are so many holes in the bill. Accordingly the NAM’s statement from Keith McCoy, vice president for energy and natural resources, features this secondary headline: “Legislation Raises Carbon Reduction Limits, Lacks Specifics on Many Key Elements.”

Jack Gerard, president, American Petroleum Institute, in a blog post offers this political insight about the legislation’s holes:

The Boxer-Kerry climate change bill leaves unaddressed key elements of how it intends to constrain carbon emissions. Unfortunately, it appears to be following the pattern the House followed, which resulted in a political bidding process that picked winners and losers.

And in a news release, Gerard follows by saying, “If the Kerry-Boxer approach mimics the House bill, as early indications suggest, it will undermine our energy security by making American consumers more reliant on foreign sources of refined products, kill jobs and increase fuel costs.”

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN):

These are fancy, complicated words for high-cost energy that sends jobs overseas looking for cheap energy. Instead, we should take practical steps to produce low-cost, clean, carbon-free energy and create jobs. Specifically, we should build 100 new nuclear plants, electrify half our cars and trucks, expand exploration offshore for American natural gas and oil, and double funding for energy research and development.

Good story in The Great Falls Tribune, “Climate legislation worries electric cooperatives.” Here’s a comment from Judith Simonson of Northern Lights Inc. Electric in northwestern Montana we fully endorse: “American businesses have innovative ideas that should be engaged through financial incentives, not mandates.”

We should note that rural electric co-ops represent a usually reliable Democratic constituent group, so there’s doubts and opposition from both sides of the aisle. Note this, too:

John Lewis, deputy chief of staff for Baucus, said it could take more than one session for Congress to approve major climate change legislation, particularly after the drawn out debate on health care.

“It’s the very beginning of what could be a long process,” he said.

A statement from Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV): “The climate legislation proposed today by Senators Boxer and Kerry is a disappointing step in the wrong direction and I am against it.”

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