Boxer, Kerry unveil Senate version of cap and trade

| 9/30/2009

U.S. Sens. Barbara Boxer and John Kerry introduced their version of controversial cap-and-trade legislation Wednesday, Sept. 30.

Cap and trade would establish limits for greenhouse gas emissions in several business sectors. A credit system would allow businesses that operate above limits to purchase credits and would allow businesses with leftover credits to sell on the open market.

Boxer and Kerry’s proposed cap-and-trade senate bill has goals of lowering greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent of 2005 levels by the year 2020, 58 percent of 2005 levels by 2030, and 17 percent of 2005 levels by 2050.

Boxer, D-CA, and Kerry, D-MA, have previously stated they want to begin hearings on the bill in early October.

At an unveiling ceremony on the Capitol lawn, Boxer touted investment that could be driven by cap and trade.

“The global clean energy market is estimated to reach two-and-a-half times the size of the global personal computer market by the year 2020,” Boxer said. “We know from venture capitalists that billions of dollars from the private sector will flow into this market. Others will move ahead if we don’t seize this opportunity.”

The U.S. House of Representatives narrowly approved its version of cap and trade (HR2454) in July.

OOIDA opposed the House version, saying the measure would reportedly raise diesel costs by 88 cents per gallon, and that proceeds wouldn’t benefit the nation’s Highway Trust Fund.

Some cost estimates for the House cap-and-trade bill showed the legislation could cost American families more than $1,000 annually from utility and other price increases.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer