Biggert Holds Cap & Trade Hearing Discusses Economic Impact with Local Businesses
U.S. Representative Judy Biggert (R-IL-13) today held a roundtable meeting on the cap-and-trade legislation that is currently working its way through Congress.
Featuring local industry leaders, environmental advocates, policy analysts and businesses owners, the roundtable focused on H.R. 2454, the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade proposal that was reported out of the House Energy and Commerce on May 21, 2009, and awaits action by several other House and Senate Committees. The bill would impose a carbon emissions cap on various sectors, but particularly in any energy-intensive business. Opponents maintain that energy prices will rise and jobs will be lost; proponents state that costs will decline because of energy efficiencies and that the bill is necessary to address global climate change.
"Congress shouldn't move full steam ahead on legislation when the potential impact on jobs and consumer prices hasn't been fully considered, especially during a time of high unemployment," said Biggert. "I think we must also consider what the impact could be on our international competitiveness with countries like India and China.
"The science behind climate change is sound," said Biggert a senior Member of the House Science & Technology Committee. "That's why I've worked for years to advance research and development on alternative energy technologies. Right here in Illinois, at Argonne National Lab, we've been able to make great strides on things like hydrogen energy, plug-in hybrids vehicles, and carbon-free nuclear energy. But during an economic recession, we have to think twice about policies that will adversely affect businesses that create jobs and support growth and innovation."
Biggert invited participants to share their views on the legislation, suggest possible changes to propose in Congress, and address the best ways to limit greenhouse gas emissions without setting American businesses at an economic disadvantage.
Participants included: Matt Davis with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Pat Callan with the Illinois Realtors Association, Patrick Charbonneau with Navistar, Henry Henderson with the Natural Resources Defense Council, David Kreutzer with the Heritage Foundation, and Ralph Loomis from the Exelon Corporation.