In late April, Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), chair of the House Select Committee for Energy Independence, joined with Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) to put out a statement of principles for climate legislation. Their framework for future climate bills calls for emissions reductions of 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050, the establishment of near-term targets, and the auctioning of emissions permits with proceeds going toward clean-energy technology and programs to help vulnerable communities and ecosystems.
This week, as the 110th Congress draws to a close (well, theoretically … they were supposed to be done last week, but they’re still going at it), the trio announced that they’ve added 149 signatures to their principles. Signatories include 11 members of the moderate “Blue Dog” coalition, 27 members of the Congressional Black Caucus, eight members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and the 30 members of the New Democrat Coalition. The representatives hope that these principles will be the basis for whatever climate bill comes out of the House next Congress.
“Acting in accordance with these principles is critical to achieving a fair and effective bill that will avoid the most dangerous global warming and assist those harmed by the warming that is unavoidable, while strengthening our economy,” they wrote in an Oct. 2 letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi [PDF].