Monday, November 24, 2008

"Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy" Coalition Formed

A new coalition has been created that will lobby Congress for policies that encourage energy efficiency, renewable energy use and green job creation, while discouraging higher-polluting technologies. Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy (BICEP) founding members include Levi Strauss & Co, Sun Microsystems Inc., Timberland Co., Nike Inc, Starbucks Corp., and Ceres. BICEP is calling on next year's Congress to create strong U.S. climate and energy legislation in early 2009.

According to BICEP's website, the coalition is calling on Congress to consider the following principles:

Reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050

1) Set greenhouse gas reduction targets:The United States must achieve a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 and at least 25 percent reduction below 1990 levels by 2020.

2) Establish a cap-and-trade system: The United States must establish an economy-wide cap on greenhouse gas emissions and allow for a trading system which (i) incorporates a 100 percent auction of allowances, (ii) promotes energy efficiency, and (iii) accelerates clean energy technologies that help achieve the targets mentioned above at the lowest possible cost.

Promote Energy Efficiency

3) Establish aggressive energy efficiency policies: The United States should move forward with aggressive energy efficiency policies -- including, but not limited to, stronger building codes, appliance standards, vehicle fuel efficiency standards, and tax incentives, and the establishment of a nationwide energy efficiency resource standard (EERS) -- to promote at least a doubling of our historic rate of energy efficiency improvement.

4) Encourage transportation for a clean energy economy: The United States should utilize standards, incentives, and other policies to promote efficient vehicles, plug-in electric hybrids, low-carbon fuels, reduction in vehicle miles traveled and transit-oriented development.

Invest in a Clean Energy Economy

5) Increase investment in technology while eliminating subsidies:The United States should ensure public investment in energy efficiency; renewables and carbon capture and storage technology while eliminating subsidies for fossil fuel industries.

6) Ensure public investment in new jobs:Federal climate change legislation must create a stimulus for job growth and increased productivity through mobilization and investment in climate-based solutions. Special attention should be given to establishing “green collar” jobs in low-income communities and communities vulnerable to economic impact from climate change.

7) Adopt a renewable portfolio policy: The United States should require that nationally 20 percent of electricity be generated from renewable energy sources by 2020, and 30 percent by 2030.

8) Capture and store carbon emissions from coal-fired power:The U.S. government should (i) limit the construction of new coal-fired power plants to those that capture and store carbon emissions, (ii) incentivize the installation of best available emissions control technologies on new and existing plants, and (iii) require carbon capture and storage capability in all existing plants by 2030.

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