FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CCL pushes to keep climate in center of ongoing Build Back Better negotiations
Dec. 20, 2021 – In a statement yesterday, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) indicated he “cannot move forward” with the Build Back Better Act. But today, Majority Leader Schumer announced that the Senate will hold a vote on a revised version of the House-passed Build Back Better Act “very early in the new year.” Citizens’ Climate Lobby will continue to push hard to keep climate a central issue in the negotiations and for a carbon price to be added to the legislation.
One of Sen. Manchin’s reasons for not supporting the legislation was that “the energy transition [his] colleagues seek is already well underway in the United States of America.” Though the energy transition is underway, it is not moving nearly fast enough to protect Americans from the worst impacts of climate change.
President Biden pledged to the world that America will reduce our greenhouse gas emissions 50% by 2030. CCL VP of Government Affairs Dr. Danny Richter said, “Without climate policies like those in the Build Back Better Act and a robust price on carbon, we will fall short of that critical goal. Our lawmakers must continue to try to reach agreement on these policies.”
Many Democratic Senators are publicly reiterating their commitment to ongoing negotiations and the importance of climate policies. Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) told CNN, “The planet is not going to pause its warming process while we sort our politics out. We owe it to future generations to figure out what can pass, and pass it.” Sen. Martin Heinrich said on Twitter, “No one will stop me from taking action on the climate crisis. […] Our President and many Democrats in Congress […] are more motivated than ever. Let’s stay fired up and find our opportunities for change.”
They’re right. No matter where political negotiations stand, the stability of our climate should not be a bargaining chip.
Majority Leader Schumer seems to agree. His statement today acknowledged that “our planet is warming so fast that extreme weather disasters are now commonplace in America and across the world.” He said clearly, “We were elected to address these many needs and we will not stop fighting until we do.”
CCL President Madeleine Para said, “When Congress returns in January, Citizens’ Climate Lobby will advocate for climate policies to be a centerpiece of whatever reconciliation package continues to be debated, and for inclusion of a carbon price. We will remind Congress and the White House of President Biden’s commitment to reduce emissions 50% below 2005 levels by 2030, and we will continue trying to get Republicans to walk faster toward climate action.”
Americans across the country are more concerned about climate change than they’ve ever been. Our grassroots organization is working to make sure every member of Congress understands this concern and shares their constituents’ sense of urgency to solve the problem.
Para added, “No matter what, this one particular bill is not the end for action on climate. It is part of an ongoing effort to enact policies that will ensure we return to a healthy climate.”