米下院本会議は２６日、米国で初めての排出権取引制度による温室効果ガス削減を柱に、地球温暖化の包括的対策を目指す「米 クリーンエネルギー・安全保障法案」を賛成２１９、反対２１２の小差で可決した。京都議定書後の地球温暖化対策の枠組みを主導し、国際社会での米国の信頼 回復のため、オバマ政権は同法案の成立を最重要課題の一つと位置づけ、議会に協力を働きかけてきた。産業界や共和党の抵抗でブッシュ前政権は温室効果ガス 削減の義務化を「封印」してきただけに、下院通過は大きな節目となった。
Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h2454/text
The bill contains the following key provisions:
June 26, 2009 NYT
House Passes Bill to
Address Threat of Climate Change
The House passed legislation on Friday intended to address global warming and transform the way the nation produces and uses energy.
The vote was the first time either house of Congress had approved a bill meant to curb the heat-trapping gases scientists have linked to climate change. The legislation, which passed despite deep divisions among Democrats, could lead to profound changes in many sectors of the economy, including electric power generation, agriculture, manufacturing and construction.
The bill’s passage, by 219 to 212, with 44 Democrats voting against it, also established a marker for the United States when international negotiations on a new climate change treaty begin later this year.
At the heart of the legislation is a cap-and-trade system that sets a limit on overall emissions of heat-trapping gases while allowing utilities, manufacturers and other emitters to trade pollution permits, or allowances, among themselves. The cap would grow tighter over the years, pushing up the price of emissions and presumably driving industry to find cleaner ways of making energy.
President Obama hailed the House passage of the bill as “a bold and necessary step.” He said in a statement that he looked forward to Senate action that would send a bill to his desk “so that we can say, at long last, that this was the moment when we decided to confront America’s energy challenge and reclaim America’s future.”
Mr. Obama had lobbied wavering lawmakers in recent days, and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore had made personal appeals to dozens of fence-sitters.
As difficult as House passage proved, it is just the beginning of the energy and climate debate in Congress. The issue now moves to the Senate, where political divisions and regional differences are even more stark.
Representative Henry A. Waxman, Democrat of California, a co-sponsor of the bill, called the vote a “decisive and historic action” that would position the United States as a leader in energy efficiency and technology.
But the legislation, a patchwork of compromises, falls far short of what many European governments and environmentalists have said is needed to avert the worst effects of global warming. And it pitted liberal Democrats from the East and West Coasts against more conservative Democrats from areas dependent on coal for electricity and on heavy manufacturing for jobs.
While some environmentalists enthusiastically supported the legislation, others, including Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, opposed it. Industry officials were split, with the United States Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers opposing the bill and some of the nation’s biggest corporations, including Dow Chemical and Ford, backing it.
Republican leaders called the legislation a national energy tax and predicted that those who voted for the measure would pay a heavy price at the polls next year.
“No matter how you doctor it or tailor it,” said Representative Joe Pitts, Republican of Pennsylvania, “it is a tax.”
Only eight Republicans voted for the bill, which runs to more than 1,300 pages.
Representative John Boehner of Ohio, the Republican leader, stalled the vote by using his privilege as a party leader to consume just over an hour by reading from a 300-page amendment added in the early hours of Friday.
Apart from its domestic implications, the legislation represents a first step toward measurable cuts in carbon dioxide emissions that administration officials can point to when the United States joins other nations in negotiating a new global climate change treaty later this year. For nearly 20 years, the United States has resisted mandatory limits on heat-trapping emissions.
The German chancellor, Angela Merkel, who was in Washington on Friday to meet with Mr. Obama, strongly endorsed the bill even though it fell short of European goals for reducing the emissions of heat-trapping gases.
Mrs. Merkel, a longtime advocate of strong curbs on emissions, has been pushing the United States to take a leading role before the climate negotiations, set for December in Copenhagen.
After meeting with Mr. Obama, she said she had seen a “sea change” in the United States on climate policy that she could not have imagined a year ago when President George W. Bush was in office.
The House legislation reflects a series of concessions necessary to attract the support of Democrats from different regions and with different ideologies. In the months of horse-trading before the vote Friday, the bill’s targets for emissions of heat-trapping gases were weakened, its mandate for renewable electricity was scaled back, and incentives for industries were sweetened.
The bill’s sponsors were making deals on the House floor right up until the time of the vote. They set aside money for new energy research and a hurricane study center in Florida.
The final bill has a goal of reducing greenhouse gases in the United States to 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020, and 83 percent by midcentury.
When the program is scheduled to begin, in 2012, the estimated price of a permit to emit a ton of carbon dioxide will be about $13. That is projected to rise steadily as emission limits come down, but the bill contains a provision to prevent costs from rising too quickly in any one year.
The bill would grant a majority of the permits free in the early years of the program, to keep costs low. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that the average American household would pay an additional $175 a year in energy costs by 2020 as a result of the provision, while the poorest households would receive rebates that would lower their annual energy costs by $40.
Several House members expressed concern about the market to be created in carbon allowances, saying it posed the same risks as those in markets in other kinds of derivatives. Regulation of such markets would be divided among the Environmental Protection Agency, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
The bill also sets a national standard of 20 percent for the production of renewable electricity by 2020, although a third of that could be met with efficiency measures rather than renewable energy sources like solar, wind and geothermal power.
It also devotes billions of dollars to new energy projects and subsidies for low-carbon agricultural practices, research on cleaner coal and electric vehicle development.
Mr. Gore, who shared a Nobel Peace Prize for his work on global warming, posted an appeal on his blog for passage of the legislation.
“This bill doesn’t solve every problem,” Mr. Gore said, “but passage today means that we build momentum for the debate coming up in the Senate and negotiations for the treaty talks in December which will put in place a global solution to the climate crisis. There is no backup plan.”
June 27 (Bloomberg)
Legislation Clears U.S. House, Sent to Senate
The U.S. House passed legislation to impose the nation’s first-ever limits on greenhouse-gas emissions linked to global warming, handing President Barack Obama a win on one of his top policy priorities.
The measure now faces what is expected to be a tough legislative battle in the Senate.
Obama called yesterday’s House vote “a bold and necessary step that holds the promise of creating new industry and millions of new jobs.” The bill, he said, would usher in “a critical transition to a clean-energy economy without untenable burdens on the American people.”
House Republicans, who formed the bulk of the opposition to the bill, disputed that characterization of it. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in a statement, called the measure “an unrealistic approach that could further harm the economy and shed American jobs.”
The close 219-212 House vote on it signaled the fight that lies ahead for the plan, which would create a market for trading pollution permits to curb emissions.
Pollution-cap advocates last night praised the House action even as they vowed to push for rewrites of some of the measure’s key provisions.
“This should be a huge wake-up call,” Sierra Club Executive Director Carl Pope said in an interview. “We should not have had to have a bill this weak to pass by this narrow a margin.”
The American Clean Energy and Security Act calls for the U.S. to reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions by 17 percent from 2005 levels by 2020. It would establish a limited number of pollution permits, more than 70 percent of which would initially be given away free to utilities, manufacturers, state governments and others, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The permits could then be traded or sold.
The bill’s chief sponsors -- House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, a California Democrat, and Representative Edward Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat -- agreed to reduce the plan’s environmental mandates and increase aid to polluters, including coal-fired power plants, to help companies meet the measure’s clean-air regulations. The strategy was necessary to amass the votes needed to pass the bill.
“The Senate is now going to see it’s possible to do this legislation” by balancing competing interests and building “coalitions of environmentalists and industry to support it,” Waxman said in an interview.
Cost Per Household
The Congressional Budget Office estimated the measure would cost an average of $175 a year per household.
In the House vote, eight Republicans joined 211 Democrats in supporting the bill. Forty-four Democrats and 168 Republicans opposed it. The Democrats voting against it included some from rural districts who worried about the measure’s potential economic costs, and others who complained that the bill didn’t go far enough to protect the environment.
“I don’t know how you could be much more friendly than this bill to coal interests,” said Democrat Peter DeFazio of Oregon, who voted against the bill.
As environmental groups pledged to make the bill tougher on polluters, industry groups said they would try to lower its costs on U.S. companies.
“As the bill moves to the Senate, we believe further discussion and changes are required to ensure a level playing field for American manufacturers who compete in the global economy,” said Cal Dooley, president and chief executive officer of the American Chemistry Council. “We believe more work needs to be done.”
Republicans and many business groups, including American Farm Bureau, sought to drum up opposition to the bill by saying it would impose a “national energy tax” that would eliminate jobs, not create them.
“This is the biggest job-killing bill that has ever been on the floor of the House of Representatives,” said Republican leader John Boehner of Ohio, who spoke against the measure for about an hour. He said the U.S. should increase drilling of oil and gas while working to create alternative sources of energy.
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson negotiated revisions that led to several rural lawmakers backing the bill. Even as he voted in favor of it, though, he said the measure still has “problems” he considers “unworkable.”
“It is too complex, the way they’ve structured this and the deals they’ve cut,” said Peterson, a Minnesota Democrat.
House Democratic leaders say the bill would create 1.7 million new jobs and save 240 million barrels of oil by 2020. It would require in most cases that states get 20 percent of their electricity from renewable sources such as wind and the sun by then.
The measure would boost investment in new energy sources through a number of provisions, including financing research and providing $10 billion to develop technology to capture and store gasses from burning coal. Utilities would get free greenhouse- gas pollution permits to aid investment in renewable energy sources.
A $30 billion revolving loan fund would support small and mid-sized clean-energy manufacturing efforts.
Democrats turned back a Republican amendment from Representative Randy Forbes of Virginia that would have substituted a research summit on clean energy for the Democrats’ plan.