Crap & Trade

The unions are on the wrong side again - worried about their own best interest, not what's best for the country. Here's the AFL-CIO on the Cap & Trade bill.
The U.S. Congress took a step forward toward a national policy that helps clean up the environment and create good green jobs, but there is still work to do, union leaders say today. The American Clean Energy and Security Act, which passed out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee yesterday, would set a national ceiling on greenhouse gas emissions and let polluting industries buy and sell credits to meet it. This “cap-and-trade” system would limit harmful human-generated emissions and, hopefully, speed up development of renewable energy sources, create green jobs and help reduce our dependence on oil. AFL-CIO President John Sweeney says the bill, as currently marked up, “makes significant, job-creating investments, while attempting to minimize impacts on existing workers.” The AFL-CIO supports cap-and-trade legislation that takes a balanced approach towards an economy wide-program and prevents foreign competitors from getting advantages over American companies. But at the same time, Sweeney called on Congress to continue to improve the bill: Congress should continue to improve the legislation. We recommend that the Energy Information Administration (EIA) do a full economic analysis before the bill is voted on and make the results available to members and the public. Addressing the issues of climate change and energy policy is of immense importance.  We must do it properly to prevent harmful effects on America’s workers. Mine Workers (UMWA) President Cecil Roberts praised the bill for recognizing the key role that coal mining can play in the nation’s energy future. Coal is America’s most abundant energy resource. We have more coal than any nation on earth. As the debate over climate change has evolved over the past two decades, we have not only insisted on the preservation of coal mining jobs, but argued as well for the essential part that coal plays in sustaining our national economy and ensuring our independence from foreign oil.