Friday, January 25, 2013

Democrats form task force on climate change

Congressional Democrats, inspired by President Obama's inaugural address statements about renewed pressure to abate climate change, have formed the Task Force on Climate Change, which will be active in both the Republican-controlled House and Democratic-majority Senate, Environment News Service reports. The task force aims to renew congressional and public attention on developing climate-change policy.

Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, left, and California Rep. Henry Waxman will co-chair the Task Force. Waxman is the ranking Democrat of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and Whitehouse chairs the oversight panel of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. "Congress and the public need to understand that climate-change impacts are turning out worse than expected and our window to act is closing," Waxman said. (ENS photo)

The task force's first order of business was to send Obama a letter applauding his recognition of the impacts of climate change. They also pledged to help him address the issue and urged him to develop a comprehensive plan to counter climate change. They also asked him to not wait for Congress to act before using his administration's "broad authorities" to lower heat-trapping emissions and encourage clean energy research and development and to develop adaptive strategies. (Read more)

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