Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) on Tuesday surrendered to agriculture interests on a key provision in the massive climate and energy bill he introduced with Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.). Facing a defection from farm-state Democrats, Politico.com reports that Waxman agreed to change the bill so that “the U.S. Department of Agriculture will oversee the [carbon] offset program for farmers, and the House will seek further guidance from the Obama administration about the appropriate role for the EPA.”
Politico further reported that Waxman “agreed to ask the EPA to roll back its new requirements that farmers offset rural land developed in other countries.”
The deal paves the way for the climate and energy legislation to come to the House floor at the end of this week. Reuters reports that Waxman believes there’s a solid majority to pass the bill, which will then be acted on by the Senate.
And check Grist’s Climate Citizens page for information on what environmental groups are doing to urge passage of the bill.