Ex-EPA Chiefs Back Climate Deal Heading for Senate Vote

Aug 05, 2022 by Bloomberg

A bipartisan group of former EPA administrators endorsed the tax-and-climate deal Senate Democrats are moving to pass as quickly as this weekend, calling it the “most significant piece of climate legislation in United States history.”

“The legislation meets the moment of urgency that the climate crisis demands, and will position the U.S. to meet President Biden’s climate goals of reducing emissions 50-52% by 2030, while making unprecedented investments in clean energy solutions that will save families hundreds of dollars a year and create new, good paying union jobs across the country,” the former administrators said in a statement Friday.

The group includes former EPA chief Carol Browner, who served in a Democratic administration, and William K. Reilly, and Christine Todd Whitman, who served Republican presidents. 

The former officials said the bill would provide needed assistance to communities being ravaged by climate effects and help transition the country to cleaner energy sources.

“The Inflation Reduction Act seizes the opportunities of action, by providing financing and incentives to support upgrades and retrofits for homes and businesses that cut energy waste and boost U.S. energy independence. It invests in American workers and industry by spurring U.S. supply chains across technologies like solar, wind, carbon capture, nuclear, and hydrogen, at a time when countries around the world are racing to lead the clean energy economy,” they wrote.

The Senate bill, negotiated by Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin, includes billions to fund climate and health initiatives. 

Read more: Democrats Drop Carried Interest as Sinema Paves Way for Tax Vote

Democrats have been working to secure the simple majority to pass the bill without any Republican support. On Thursday night, a key moderate, Senator Kyrsten Sinema, said she would back the bill after Democrats agreed to drop a provision that would have narrowed a tax break for carried interest.

Passage of the bill would deliver a major legislative victory for President Joe Biden’s economic agenda ahead of the November midterms.

Read more: Senate Climate Bill Focuses CO2 Cuts in Power, Transport Sectors

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By Jordan Fabian

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