America's Climate Security Act Lauded as Significant Step towards Real Action by Congress on Climate Change
Washington, DC – The Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE), America's largest and most diverse coalition of clean energy industry interests, today lauded the introduction of America's Climate Security Act as a sign that Congress will move decisively to enact legislation to deal with climate change. The bill's introduction, led by Senators Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and John Warner (R-VA), with backing from the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, offers the most promise for legislative action concerning climate change.
"The Council is very pleased to see this important process starting in Congress with the introduction of America's Climate Security Act today," said Lisa Jacobson, the Council's Executive Director. "We look forward to working with Senator Lieberman and Senator Warner, as well as the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on a market-based, federal program that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and deploys existing clean energy options and technologies, such as renewable energy, natural gas and supply-side and demand-side energy efficiency."
The Climate Security Act provides an essential foundation for Congress and the public to consider the issues associated with establishment of a national, economy-wide program to address climate change. "The time has come for action by Congress on climate change, and the Council stands ready to work with others to expand upon this important proposal," Jacobson stated.
The Council, which is comprised of natural gas, renewable energy and energy efficiency companies and trade associations, seeks a climate change program that:
- Is national in scope. A federal program is preferable to the current patchwork of state and regional programs, both regulatory and voluntary. Such a program would enlarge the pool of participants, thereby lowering compliance costs, creating stronger price signals for clean energy options and offering greater compliance flexibility while advancing national security objectives.
- Incorporates a mandatory, economy-wide and market-based approach. A federal program should include a cap-and-trade or project-based approach that efficiently achieves both energy and climate objectives. These types of approaches provide long-term signals to the economy, versus a command and control approach, and also offer compliance flexibility.
- Expands alternative energy resources from clean energy and energy efficiency technologies. Such a program
should increase energy supply from sources such as on-site combined heat and power and renewable energy. It also should increase energy efficiency to mitigate rising energy demand and fuel price volatility.
- Recognizes improvements in energy efficiency. A federal program should reward energy efficiency in existing and replacement energy infrastructure to fully maximize market-driven incentives for energy and environmental improvements.
- Establishes near-term and long-term targets to signal the marketplace and drive technology investment and innovation.
- Establishes linkages with international programs. The federal program should establish international linkages at the outset of the program. These linkages should be comparable, verifiable and transparent. The program should permit trading with compatible cap-and-trade programs and project-based initiatives in other parts of
The Council urges Congress to adopt a national climate change program to send strong market-signals to the economy toward clean energy technologies. More wide-scale use of existing clean energy technologies will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, enhance energy security, independence and reliability, improve air quality and offer the opportunity to create millions of new jobs in the United States.