House Passes Historic Climate Change Bill
Friday, 26 June 2009
Just a few moments ago, the US House of Representatives passed the historic American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), otherwise known as cap-and-trade. The vote passed 219-212. The bill’s goal is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 83% by 2050. While the bill still must go through the Senate and then conference before heading to the President, it represents a major accomplishment in the fight against climate change. This is your victory! Solving climate change is ultimately about leadership. We saw this in the House today. But it is your leadership as Carbonfund.org supporters and partners over the last five years that made this bill possible. Just a few years ago few people had any idea what the term ‘carbon footprint’ meant. Now the term is used regularly and even spoofed in The Onion. And so-called experts talked about carbon costing $50-100 per tonne, potentially wrecking our economy, not the real-life $5-10 per tonne we see today. You knew climate change was a serious problem. And while you were under no obligation to take any action, you did. You reduced your emissions and you committed yourself, family or business to being carbon neutral. You supported third-party verified projects that reduced emissions. You spurred investment in clean energy projects and reforestation. And you showed it can all be done without breaking the bank. Make no mistake, if we were still debating economic models showing theoretical carbon costs, this historic bill would not be possible. ACES is possible today because of what you have shown in the real world, that people want to reduce their carbon output, that it can be done relatively easily and that we can do it very cost-effectively. Indeed, while the bill aims for an 83% reduction in 2050, and just 17% by 2020, many of you have reduced your emissions by 100% today. Over 1,200 businesses and organizations and more than 450,000 individuals have reduced and offset their carbon emissions with Carbonfund.org, showing leadership when few even knew what they were talking about. We’ll all need to continue to minimize and offset our carbon emissions even after our country acts, but the commitment you have shown on fighting climate change has created the momentum, visibility, and call for action on climate change. So enjoy this victory today. Solving climate change is about leadership and your leadership has brought us to this historic moment. Congratulations!