Instead of Hamstringing EPA, Time for Senate to Do Its Freakin' Job

Friday, January 22, 2010

What Jonathan Capehart says:
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and 35 other senators yesterday introduced a bill that would strip the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating carbon. I understand their concerns about the impact EPA action would have on the economy. But pulling the reigns on the revived agency isn't the answer. Proactive congressional action is.


...Such a measure exists. It's called the Carbon Limits and Energy for America's Renewal or CLEAR Act sponsored by Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine). In short, it would establish a cap-and-rebate system. A declining cap on greenhouse gas emissions would be set. Pollution permits would be auctioned to industry. And 75 percent of the proceeds would be rebated to the American people through monthly checks on an equal per capita basis. That could mean $1,000 returned to a family of four over the course of a year.
That's right, there's an excellent alternative to EPA regulation of carbon dioxide emission already available. Unfortunately, the dysfunctional U.S. Senate seems to believe that its job is to block everything (health care, clean energy, you name it) and prevent others (e.g., the EPA) from doing what they're supposed to. Hey, here's a thought, how about the Senate do its freakin' job for a change? I know, what a concept.