Senate to Begin Consideration of Climate Change Legislation
Next week, the Senate is expected to begin consideration of S. 3036, the Climate Security ACT, sponsored by Sens. Lieberman (D-Conn.) and Warner (R-Va.). S. 3036 would cap U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at 19 percent of 2005 emissions by 2020 and 71 percent by 2050.
Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, released a draft manager’s amendment which she will offer as a substitute for the Lieberman-Warner legislation, which would:
• Establish a “Transportation Sector Emission Reduction Fund” with revenues coming from the auction of emission allowances under the new cap and trade approach.
• Make available $171 billion for transit projects between 2012 and 2050.
• Provide $8 million for bike-pedestrian projects and other motor vehicle demand reduction projects.
• Provide additional funding for intercity passenger rail, transit or other strategies to promote reductions in VMT.
Of particular concern to AGC is a provision in the Boxer substitute that would establish a new set of transportation planning requirements and give the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) authority to approve “statewide transportation plans” as a condition for states to receive any of the $171 billion for transit projects and additional funds for other travel demand projects.
AGC will be contacting Senators to object to giving EPA new authority over the transportation planning process and removing it from U.S. Department of Transportation. AGC believes that any modifications to the transportation planning process needed to address climate changes issues should be taken up during next year’s highway reauthorization discussions.
For more information, contact Brian Deery at firstname.lastname@example.org or (703) 837-5319.
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