Monday, July 13, 2009

A Response from Senator Sessions on Cap & Trade

I received a response from Senator Jeff Sessions' office regarding my message on cap & trade. It's probably a form letter written up by his staff, but it's nice to know a) he's paying attention and b) his ideas on energy policy almost approximate mine (would've preferred more emphasis on petroleum, less emphasis on ethanol). Here followeth the letter:

July 2, 2009

Dear Mr. Leahy:

Thank you for contacting me regarding global climate change.

As you are aware, the American Clean Energy and Security Act (H.R. 2454) was introduced by U.S. Representative Henry Waxman on May 15, 2009, and passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 219-212. H.R. 2454 has a two pronged approach to cutting green house gas emissions: mandating energy efficiencies and mandating a cap and trade program.

Cap-and-trade systems are very complex and result in thousands of new regulations. I am uneasy with such an approach. Environmental and climate change matters are important to me, and I actively monitor this issue. I believe we have a responsibility to protect our environment, by using proven scientific methods that do not unnecessarily drive up costs for our citizens or jeopardize economic growth. Most scientists acknowledge that there is much that we do not know about climate change. There are many variables in accurately predicting how much warming is caused by human activity and how much warming can be attributed to other causes. To this end, I am committed to sound scientific research, and I will support proposals that guarantee benefits from the sizeable expenditures necessary.

It is my belief that we need to do now what we know works to protect our environment. We should support a comprehensive plan to develop the technologies needed in order to reduce carbon emissions while continuing to grow our economy. As such, I believe that investment in new sources of energy proven to work such as nuclear power, wind, and biofuels is worthy of support. We should support the research and actual use of alternate energy sources and technologies such as solar and clean coal, hybrids, and plug-in electric vehicles, and create a new, cheaper, and safer nuclear power plan model that can be affordably replicated around the country. As such, I am actively engaged in promoting nuclear energy, developing cellulosic (wood, switchgrass) ethanol, diesel enhancement, plug-in hybrids, coal-to-liquid, and expanded oil and natural gas production in America.

Thank you again for contacting my office. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any comments or questions.

Very truly yours,

Jeff Sessions
United States Senator

JS: mb

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