Sunday, September 13, 2009

Push Cap and Trade Up on Agenda

With a new bill going to the Senate as early as this month, the cap-and-trade emissions law would seem like a senate priority.  However, it is being over shadowed by the monstrous health care overhaul debate.  The bill, which proposes the cap and trade emission regulation technique, has already went through the House and is now set to be debated in the senate. The original date of completion was scheduled for September 28; however, the date has been pushed back later toward the year’s end.   Under the cap and trade system all businesses are given a cap on their greenhouse gas emissions.   Then can then trade their allotted emission consumption with other companies if they reduce their own, for example, a company that produces 10 billion tons of carbon dioxide per a year, could reduce the number to 5 billion tons a year and then trade their right to emit 5billiion tons of carbon dioxide to another company.

Although some congress members are reluctant to push for this crucial bill at the same time as the costly health care bills going through congress at the moment.  I think the time is crucial.  The United States, being a large, diverse, area, encompassing many political agendas should have a congress capable of legislating just as many diverse agendas and representing the wide variety of the population.  This is the goal.  Congress should have the breadth and scope to tacked issues such as greenhouse/CO2 emissions, health care, and taxation simultaneously. The excessive bickering among various groups who are becoming less and less willing to compromise should not get in the way of the most important priority of our representatives, our wellbeing.  Living in a clean, relatively pollution-free environment is a major step in improving the well being of the American citizen, not to mention the rest of the world.

Cap and trade emission regulations are already implemented in some of the most post-industrialized nations in the world, such as all the countries in the European Union.  Additionally, cap and trade emissions policies already exist in the United States for pollutants such as sulfur dioxide.  With the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting on December 7 in Copenhagen, the United States should set a decent example on climate change policies, instead of figure pointing and blaming other countries for not playing on a level field.  There has to be a pioneer in the global scheme.  The debate against cap and trade due to financial burdens being loaded on the taxpayer are true indeed; however, this is the price of doing business in a regulated market, the general well being of the population will precede that of the corporate world.  This will eventually lead to other innovating techniques to attract economic stimulation.