Climate Action On Capitol Hill

The U.S. Senate passed an economic recovery package today, setting up a conference committee to reconcile its version with a House of Representatives bill.

Adam Kolton, National Wildlife Federation's senior director of congressional and federal affairs, said today:

"Both houses of Congress have clearly shown they recognize the urgent need to repower America's economy with bold investments in clean energy and efficient technologies.

"We can put millions of Americans back to work installing solar panels and windmills, greening our schools and modernizing our power grid. As the two versions of the bill move to conference committee, we hope Congressional negotiators maintain the House bill's strong investments in education, clean energy and America's natural resources—all proven ways to stimulate shovel-ready projects and rapidly create jobs."

Looking ahead, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) says she intends to schedule a vote on a climate change bill before December 2009, when world leaders will meet in Copenhagen for the U.N. Climate Conference to reach a global agreement on how to deal with climate change.

Speaking to reporters recently, Pelosi said she intends to have a climate bill passed before the UN-sponsored summit in December.

"We can't fix it all overnight," Pelosi told the San Francisco Chronicle, "but we have to begin."

Henry Waxman (D-CA), whose Energy and Commerce Committee is likely to lead House action on climate legislation, said last month that he intends to have a climate bill ready by Memorial Day.

Published: February 11, 2009