News Break: Senate Rejects Murkowski Resolution, Blocks “Big Oil Bailout”

Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski’s resolution that would have essentially overturned the Environmental Protection Agency’s finding that greenhouse gas emissions pose a threat to human health and welfare was voted down today in the Senate 53-47.

Press release from the Sierra Club:
The Senate did the right thing today. With oil still gushing into the Gulf because of a Wild West approach to environmental and safety regulations, it would have been be remarkably irresponsible to exempt polluters from even more laws. Adding insult to injury, the legislation would have stalled new fuel economy rules for cars and trucks that are on track to reduce our oil dependence and save consumers at the pump.

The resolution would have erased the finding of EPA that global warming pollution is a threat to human health and safety, and would have blocked action required by the Supreme Court. The effect would have been to weaken the Clean Air Act, leaving oil and coal companies free to keep on putting global warming pollution into the air without any safeguards or regulation.

Opponents and supporters of this resolution should agree on one thing–it is the Senate’s job to put America on the path to a clean energy future. Instead of challenging the EPA’s authority to keep the air clean and reduce global warming pollution, the Senate must challenge itself to take responsibility and pass strong, comprehensive climate and energy legislation this year and end our oil dependence.

Thomas Schueneman
Thomas Schueneman
Tom is the founder and managing editor of 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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