Climate Group to Senate: Move Forward on Bill

Posted April 26, 2010 at 1:53pm

Environmental groups and other stakeholders are pushing back against the delay on climate change legislation after Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) derailed the scheduled rollout of the bill over the weekend.

The U.S. Climate Action Partnership, a coalition of environmental groups and businesses, came out this afternoon with a forceful statement urging the Senate and the Obama administration to “move forward as quickly as possible on this critical issue.”

The group’s members include Alcoa, the Environmental Defense Fund, Ford Motor Company, Exelon Corp. and PepsiCo, among others.

“The U.S. faces a critical moment that will determine whether we will be able to unleash billions in energy investments or remain mired in the economic status quo,” USCAP said in the statement. “Americans need and deserve a comprehensive climate and energy policy that will reinvigorate our economy, create American jobs, unleash American innovation, secure our energy independence, and protect our environment.”

Duke Energy, a USCAP member, is also voicing its frustration in the backward movement.

“We’re disappointed things didn’t come out today, that there wasn’t a bill introduced,” Duke spokesman Tom Williams said. “We stand ready to continue to work on this and think that it’s come a very long way.”

The push comes as Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) is trying to make progress on the bill.

Kerry is set to meet with Graham and Sen. Joe Lieberman (ID-Conn.) tonight after the cloture vote on financial regulatory reform, according to a Senate aide familiar with the negotiations.