December 03, 2009

Kerry Introduces Legislation To Support Global Climate Deal

Bill Supports U.S. Climate Finance Contribution

Senator John Kerry (D-MA), Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and author of S. 1733, the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act, today introduced the “International Climate Change Investment Act of 2009.”  This legislation addresses the global security risks of climate change and promotes our economic leadership and competitiveness by enhancing demand for American clean energy products.  The Act strongly supports a global agreement at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change negotiations in Copenhagen, Denmark, later this month.

The legislation, which is co-sponsored by Foreign Relations Committee members Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Ben Cardin (D-MA), Ted Kaufmann (D-DE), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), serves as the foundation for the United States’ international financial commitment by supporting key elements of a global climate agreement: adaptation to climate change, deployment of clean energy technologies, and reduction of deforestation and forest degradation. These provisions are intended to be incorporated into comprehensive climate change legislation.

“As we approach the Copenhagen negotiations, this legislation demonstrates that the U.S. Senate is serious about supporting a global agreement to address climate change,” said Sen. Kerry.  “While America must lead this effort, we know it can’t be done alone – that’s why we are taking a strategic approach to addressing this issue. This legislation makes important investments in adaptation, clean energy deployment, and reducing deforestation – all critical elements of a global deal.”

QUOTES FROM CO-SPONSORS

The “International Climate Change Investment Act of 2009” provides for a coordinated approach to addressing climate change around the world by:

  • Establishing a “Strategic Interagency Board on International Climate Investment” to oversee multi-agency contributions to international climate finance;
  • Establishing a detailed reporting and review system to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of assistance provided under this Act;
  • Recognizing that the United States cannot act alone in a global effort to address climate change, requires the State Department to prepare a report to Congress summarizing the progress of rapidly industrializing countries in achieving low-carbon development;
  • Authorizing funds to support key elements of the Bali Action Plan under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change:

-          Reducing Emissions from Deforestation Program: Provides assistance to conserve existing forests, reduce rates of deforestation, and build capacity in developing countries to participate in global carbon markets. Sets goal of achieving emissions reductions by at least 720 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2020 and a cumulative amount of at least 6 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2025.

-          Clean Technology Deployment Program: Supports U.S. export markets by establishing a clean technology deployment program to advance clean energy technologies and reduce energy poverty in developing countries.  Focuses on the role of the private sector by establishing an Expert Panel on Technology Deployment consisting of representatives of leading academic institutions, civil society, government agencies and business.  Ensures that investments are made in countries that are taking domestic action to reduce emissions and have robust compliance and enforcement with requirements for the protection of intellectual property rights. 

-          International Adaptation and Global Security Program: Provides new and additional assistance to the most vulnerable developing countries to develop and implement climate change adaptation programs. 

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