Bond: We Must Cut Carbon without Cutting Family Budgets, Worker Payrolls

WASHINGTON, DC ? U.S. Senator Kit Bond, a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today stressed the need to cut carbon emissions and protect the environment without hurting workers and low-income families.
            “I support cutting carbon emissions, but we must cut carbon without cutting family budgets or worker payrolls,” said Bond.  “At a time when Americans are suffering record pain at the pump, high energy costs, a home mortgage crisis, and a soft economy, this is not the time to raise energy prices on our families and workers.”
            This week the U.S. Senate is considering a bill by Senators Lieberman and Warner to address climate change by capping and reducing carbon emissions.  Bond, speaking on the Senate floor, agreed that Congress must act to cut carbon emissions, but the Lieberman-Warner bill is a dangerous solution for families and workers.  Bond noted that sponsors of the legislation themselves believe the bill cost $6.7 trillion between now and 2050.  Of course, the bill’s $6.7 trillion price tag will be passed on to families and workers in the form of higher power, heating and cooling, and gasoline bills. 
            The cost of this bill is particularly high for Missouri.  Experts at the American Council for Capital Formation predict Missouri will lose 76,100 jobs by 2030 if the bill is enacted.  Also, it will cost the average Missouri household $6,852 a year and hike Missouri power bills 153 percent.  The pain at the pump for Missourians will also increase –the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) predicts that under this bill gas prices will be forced higher by $1.40 per gallon over the life of the bill.
            Last week Bond traveled Missouri, meeting with families and businesses in six-cities across the state about the need for a comprehensive energy solution.  On this tour, Bond heard from families, truckers, and small businesses who are struggling with record high gas prices.  Congress should not ignore the hardship these families are facing, and should not vote to increase their current pain, which Lieberman-Warner would do, stressed Bond.
            Despite the high cost to families and workers – $6.7 trillion – the bill would have no measurable impact on world climate temperatures, Bond pointed out.  EPA estimates that if China and India do not institute similar plans, as both have refused to do, the Lieberman-Warner bill will have no measurable impact on word temperatures.  That would mean $6.7 trillion of pain to families and workers for no environmental gain.
            While the Lieberman-Warner bill is the wrong solution to help our environment, Bond said there is much Congress can do.  Speaking at a forum that examined alternative sources of clean energy earlier today, Bond emphasized that we must invest in technology – from increasing nuclear power production,   maximizing corn and soy harvests for more ethanol and biodiesel production, expediting clean coal technology including injecting carbon deep into the ground for permanent storage, and expanding our domestic manufacturing supply base for advanced batteries for hybrid vehicles, to name a few.  But if we mandate steep carbon cuts before the technology is ready to meet those mandates, then this bill will become little more than a giant tax increase on the American people.