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U.S. Must Enact Mandatory Limits on Global Warming Pollution

by: NRDC    11 May 2006

WASHINGTON (May 10, 2006) -- Today the House Appropriations Committee approved a resolution already passed in the Senate that recognizes the problem of global warming and declares the U.S. needs mandatory limits to cut the pollution that causes it.


“This is another indication of serious Congressional movement on global warming,” said David Doniger, Climate Center policy director at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). “A majority of the Senate and a traditionally conservative committee are now on record supporting global warming limits.”


The resolution was offered by Rep. Norm Dicks (D-Wash.) and was approved by a voice vote. The language of the resolution parallels a resolution passed last year in the Senate that calls for enacting “mandatory market-based limits and incentives to slow, stop, and reverse” global warming pollution. The Senate resolution, offered by Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) on June 22, 2005, passed by a 54-43 vote.


This action comes at a time of increasing calls for mandatory U.S. action from scientists and political and corporate leaders at home and abroad.


Last month, representatives from several leading electric utilities appeared before an U.S. Senate workshop on global warming solutions asking for mandatory limits to curb global warming pollution. Corporations have been talking about binding emission cuts as well --  Wal-Mart, Cinergy, Exelon and GE, to name a few—and have been taking a hard look at how global warming affects their business.


In February, Evangelical Christian leaders signed a letter calling for global warming pollution cuts. State and city governments from coast to coast are also taking action to fight global warming. Last month Maryland became the eighth state to join a global warming pollution pact among northeast governors. And more than 200 cities have joined the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement.


Just today, the Alaska State Legislature passed the first global warming legislation enacted in the state. The bill will create a global warming commission to investigate the cost for the state from global warming impacts and make recommendations for action. The first report is due in March of 2007.

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The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, nonprofit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has more than 1 million members and online activists nationwide, served from offices in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco.