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Statement of Senator Bond on Proceeding to Consideration of the Senate Climate Bill
June 2, 2008

 Posted By Marc Morano - 6:33 PM ET - Marc_Morano@EPW.Senate.Gov

STATEMENT OF CHRISTOPHER S. BOND

ON PROCEEDING TO CONSIDERATION OF SENATE CLIMATE BILL

June 2, 2008

Link to Senator Bond's Statement

 

Mr. President, I support cutting carbon emissions, but we must cut carbon without cutting family budgets or worker payrolls.

At a time when Americans are suffering record pain at the pump, high energy costs, a home mortgage crisis, and a soft economy, this is not the time to raise energy prices on our families and workers.

I just returned from a six city energy tour of my home State of Missouri. From Joplin, Missouri in the southwest part of the State to Palmyra in the northeast, families and truckers are suffering from record high gas prices. Drivers are fed up with gasoline prices approaching $4.00 and diesel prices even higher.

I heard from truckers, and small trucking businesses. They are struggling now, with some even being forced out of business. And when truckers pay higher prices, we all pay higher prices for everything, because of the transportation costs of our products. Why would we vote to make this misery worse?

I fear this bill will make the suffering of our families and workers much worse. The sponsors of the substitute themselves tell us that their bill will raise between now and 2050 over $6.735 TRILLION - that is trillion with a "T". If you wrote that out it would be 6735 and nine more zeros after that. That number is so big, it will not fit on a single poster-board as you see here.

That $6.7 trillion will come from the pockets of millions of families and workers across the nation. Bill sponsors may claim they are trying to hit energy companies with the cost of this program. But, we all know that they will just pass on their costs on to families and workers in the form of higher energy bills and more pain at the pump.

Energy consumers and producers will have no other choice. That is because the technology to meet deep and fast carbon cuts without massive economic disruptions does not exist today and will not be ready for another 15 or 20 years. Thus, the impossible mandates of Lieberman-Warner will be a massive tax increase on all Americans.

Lieberman-Warner’s $6.7 trillion cost will hit my constituents in Missouri particularly hard. Experts at the American Council for Capital Formation predict Missouri will lose 76,100 jobs by 2030 if we enact Lieberman-Warner. The average Missouri household will face $6,852 dollars in extra costs each year see electricity 153% higher.

Missouri drivers will face gasoline prices 140% higher under Lieberman-Warner. The Environmental Protection Agency predicted Lieberman-Warner would force gas prices higher by $1.40 per gallon by 2050.

Lieberman-Warner will have a particularly unfair and harsh impact on America’s heartland. Under Lieberman-Warner, power bills will go up much more in the Midwest, South and Plains States compared to the West Coast and Northeast. Under Lieberman-Warner, power bills will increase 137% more in the Midwest then they will on the West Coast. Power bills will go up 113% more in the Great Plains, and 104% more in the South then they will on the West Coast.

Of course it is no surprise that the main drivers of this legislation and its substitute are from the Northeast and California. Their constituents will not feel the greatest amount of pain.

The pain will be focused on the coal-dependent, manufacturing job heavy Midwest, South, and Great Plains.

Perhaps the most disturbing feature of this debate is that for all the pain on families and workers, for all of its $6.7 trillion price tag, it will have no measurable impact on world temperatures.

That is right. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that if China and India do not also institute similar plans, as they have already told us they will not, then Lieberman-Warner will have no measurable impact on world temperatures. That means $6.7 trillion in pain by American families and workers for no gain in global temperatures.

I will have more to say about all of this during the debate in coming days. I also look forward to debating how we can cut carbon without cutting family budgets or worker payrolls. There is so much more we can do to reduce carbon emissions by increasing nuclear power production, expediting clean coal technology, expanding our domestic manufacturing supply base for advanced batteries to get more hybrid cars and trucks on the road and more research to get the next generation of cellulosic biofuels in our tanks.

In each of these areas, Missouri is leading the way to our clean energy future. We all can be leaders to our clean energy future - and we can do so without punishing our pocketbooks or payrolls.

I look forward to debating this and more in the coming week. Thank you.

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