Majority of Senate Voices Support for Progress on Comprehensive Climate Change Bill

June 6, 2008
Tony Kreindler, EDF, 202-572-3378 or 202-210-5791 (cell)

Majority of Senate Voices Support for Progress on Comprehensive Climate Change Bill
(Washington, DC – June 6, 2008) A majority of the U.S. Senate today voiced support for moving forward with the Climate Security Act, marking an historic turning point in the debate over national climate policy. While the bill could not survive continuing delay tactics, it garnered important new momentum that sets the stage for quick action in the next Congress.
“The din of Washington politics can’t drown out the drumbeat of progress,” said Fred Krupp, president of Environmental Defense Fund. “Old adversaries came aboard and new supporters stood up for action. In the end, we got a stronger vote on a stronger bill than we had three years ago.”
A vote on cloture to begin debating amendments to S. 3036 failed to win the necessary 60 votes, but nonetheless secured 48 votes on the floor and written statements of support from six Senators not present, bringing the total to 54. Only 36 Senators voted against cloture today.
“Even many opponents of the bill said this week that America needs to cap carbon pollution. The excuses for inaction are running out,” Krupp said. “With presidential leadership, which was absent in this debate, we’re confident that 2009 will be the year Congress finally gets off the sidelines and begins to fight climate change and our country’s oil addiction.”
S. 3036, the Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act, would put a mandatory cap on U.S. greenhouse gas pollution and implement an emissions trading system that would give businesses flexibility to seek out emissions reduction opportunities at the lowest cost. The bill’s sponsors say they will bring the legislation up again next year.
Senators John McCain and Barack Obama have made clear their support for a comprehensive cap and trade program to reduce pollution, and both said today they would have voted to continue moving forward with S. 3036.
Cap and trade also is expected to be the centerpiece of a comprehensive climate bill being developed by the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Chairman John Dingell yesterday announced that he would begin hearings this month on legislative proposals, including the Climate Security Act.
About Environmental Defense Fund
A leading national nonprofit organization, Environmental Defense Fund represents more than 500,000 members. Since 1967, Environmental Defense Fund has linked science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships to create breakthrough solutions to the most serious environmental problems. For more information, visit