The National Wildlife Federation

A Note From Curtis Fisher


Regional Executive Director

Huge win.

 

On Friday, June 26, the House of Representatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act by a 219 to 212 bipartisan vote.  The bill limits global warming pollution, invests in a clean energy economy, and provides needed funding to help safeguard America's lands, waters and wildlife from the impacts of climate change.

 

For information on the 33 new tools this bill gives us to build a green economy while fighting climate change, please check out the NWF Toolbox at

 

http://www.nwf.org/nwfwebadmin/binaryVault/ACES%20Toolbox%20Analysis%20by%20NWF_6-15-091.pdf

 

In an amazing demonstration of the leadership of the Northeast region that we work in, 50 out of 56 Northeast members of Congress voted for the Waxman-Markey bill. Highlights include:

 

  • The entire 22 member New England delegation voted for the bill.
  • 25 out of 29 New York members voted for the bill. 2 Democrats and 2 Republicans voted against the bill (Michael Arcuri (D NY-24), Eric Massa (D NY-29), Peter King (R NY-3), and Chris Lee (R NY-26).
  • 11 out of 13 New Jersey members voted for the bill. 2 Republicans voted against the bill (Scott Garrett (R NJ-5) and Rodney Frelinghuysen (R NJ-11).
  • Of the 8 Republicans who voted for the bill, 4 are from the Northeast.
  • Of the 44 Democrats who voted against the bill, only 2 were from the Northeast.

 

The vote was a culmination of a comprehensive effort by NWF and many regional and national partner organizations, including NWF state affiliates in the Northeast that played a key role:

 

  • Connecticut Forest and Park Association
  • Environment Council of Rhode Island
  • Environmental Advocates of New York
  • Environmental League of Massachusetts
  • Natural Resources Council of Maine
  • Vermont Natural Resources Council

. 

While it is truly a moment to celebrate, so too is it a moment to refresh and recharge, because our work on this critical legislation must continue in the US Senate.  While this legislation is a great start, we will need to work hard to strengthen and protect it as it moves through the Senate, and then hopefully to a conference committee and ultimately to President Obama for his signature.

The Northeast Senate delegation will be critical to achieving this ambitious goal. We have some of this nation’s champions for aggressive global warming standards, including Senator John Kerry (MA), Chair of the Foreign Relations Committee, and three important members of the Environment and Public Works Committee which will first mark-up the bill (Frank Lautenberg (NJ), Bernard Sanders (VT), and Sheldon Whitehouse (RI)).

 

The Northeast also has some influential senators we must win if we are to pass strong legislation, including Maine Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, and Judd  Gregg of NH.

 

With your help and support, we can pass the most important conservation bill in our lifetimes and leave our children with a proud conservation legacy.  Please weigh in with your Senators and let them know that we need to pass the Clean Energy and Security Act this year to jumpstart America’s clean energy economy and before the international negotiations resume in Copenhagen, Denmark in December 2009.

 

Thank you!