December 07, 2009

Kerry: EPA Endangerment Finding Sends Important Signal to Congress, Copenhagen

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.), Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and head of the Congressional delegation to the international climate negotiations beginning today in Copenhagen, Denmark, today responded to reports that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will issue a final ruling that greenhouse gas emissions directly threaten human lives.

"This is a clear message to Copenhagen of the Obama Administration's commitment to address global climate change and a clear signal to Congress of the importance of passing comprehensive climate and energy legislation," said Sen. Kerry. "The EPA has acted on the Supreme Court's decision and made it clear that greenhouse gas emissions are a threat to public health in the United States and can be addressed under the Clean Air Act.

"The message to Congress is crystal clear: get moving. If Congress does not pass legislation dealing with climate change, the administration is more than justified to use the EPA to impose new regulations. Imposed regulations by definition will not include the job protections and investment incentives we are proposing in the Senate today. Given the potential for agency regulation, those who now aim to grind the legislative process to a halt would later come running to Congress to secure the kinds of incentives we can pass today. Industry needs the certainty that comes with Congressional action on this vital issue."