Legislative Watch: Waxman-Markey Passes Key Procedural Vote – Heading Toward Final Passage in the House

The Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy & Security Act has just passed a critical procedural vote by a narrow margin of 217-205. The vote approved the rule for debating the proposed legislation, and Democratic leaders are optimistic that the final passage could happen later today.

The Path to Climate Action: Waxman-Markey’s Crucial Vote

The bill proposes a cap-and-trade plan to create a market and put a price on carbon. The plan aims to reduce emissions 17% below 2005 levels by 2020 (only 4% below 1990, the commonly used benchmark year for gauging emissions reductions) and 80% by 2050.

The bill has faced an unprecedented lobbying effort in opposition, and many environmental groups are against it, saying it doesn’t go far enough. I agree it isn’t enough, but I am more worried about “the perfect becoming the enemy of the good.” We must get started now, even if it means passing a flawed bill with deep concessions to the vested interests of “business as usual.” Failure to pass climate legislation at this juncture will have consequences that reach the upcoming COP15 climate talks this December and the international community’s ability to get a deal for a post-Kyoto climate treaty starting in 2012.

Further reading: 

Red, Green, and BlueWhat the Big Green Guns Are Saying
Climate Progress10 Reasons to Support Waxman-Markey Energy Bill

Update on Waxman-Markey ACES Legislation

Despite the bill passing the House, the threat of a filibuster in the Senate prevented the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 from becoming law.

Thomas Schueneman
Thomas Schuenemanhttps://tdsenvironmentalmedia.com
Tom is the founder and managing editor of GlobalWarmingisReal.com and the PlanetWatch Group. His work appears in Triple Pundit, Slate, Cleantechnia, Planetsave, Earth911, and several other sustainability-focused publications. Tom is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists.

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