The noisemakers and party hats passed around on Dec. 31st weren't just for the celebration of the new year – it was also the birthday of the Clean Air Act. A mere 40 years ago, President Richard Nixon signed the 1970 bill into law, citing the bipartisan effort as an achievement for all parties and all Americans. December 31st couldn't have been a more symbolic day for the Clean Air Act's birthday as it was the day we looked forward at how we as a people would map our future, grow, and change for the better.
This week marks the first days of greenhouse gas regulation under the Clean Air Act (CAA) and the beginning of the new Congress. The first phase of Clean Air Act regulation began on Sunday, January 2, a process that creates incentives for cleaner electricity sources such as renewables over older technology such as coal-fired power plants. Stage-managing for the 112th Congress will be the primary goal of the coming weeks.
Let's start the New Year off right. While Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) has taken a firm stance in keeping the EPA's regulation in place at the start of this year, Kyle Gracey at Grist explains his top resolution is to use his words carefully and correctly, starting with calling carbon emissions and greenhouse gas emissions exactly what they are: pollution. He calls on everyone to take the neutral word out of deadly substances.
Like all of you, I was shocked and angered by what happened this weekend in Arizona. The attempted assassination of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ), along with the senseless shooting of 19 other victims -- including the murder a federal judge, a congressional aide, a nine-year-old-girl and three other Arizonians -- is a tragedy that cuts deeply on many levels. Our thoughts and prayers are with all the victims of this tragedy and their families.
Saturday's attack on Tucson, Arizona Rep. Gabrielle "Gabby" Giffords (D-AZ) has Capitol Hill on edge. Republican House leadership plans to delay consideration of the hyper-partisan health care repeal bill, and will instead pay tribute to Giffords by dismissing Congress for the week. Discussions of gun control and violent political messages are expected to ensue in the coming week.
I am close to the tragedy in Tucson in several ways. I organized events with Congresswoman Giffords and her staff several times before her election, and lobbied her office for 1Sky last year. Also, my church is a few minutes away from Jared Loughner's home and the shooting site.
The author is a Tucson resident and volunteer organizer for 1Sky in Arizona.
The numbers are in on 2010's final temperature; the EPA makes a great announcement about MTR; President Obama makes a bold move for solar energy and we're putting the best phone applications for climate on your radar.
We're two weeks into the new year and we think it's time to get some 2011 action started. This year is all about building a strong, widespread, and passionate climate movement that can beat polluter interests who want to use our sky as a dumping ground. That's why we're working with people like you to create local climate teams all over the country.
After a week of grieving over the tragedy in Tucson, members of the House returns to DC and to business as usual this week, beginning with a vote on the GOP's "job-killing health care repeal" legislation. The unfortunate events in Tucson have pushed political leaders to call for civility and bipartisanship, yet the rhetoric on Capitol Hill is as heated as ever. The Clean Air Act is up and running for carbon pollution, but remains a political target for leaders of the GOP-led House.
Senator Sherrod Brown (D- OH) has built a reputation of standing up for Ohioans and all Americans in the face of runaway corporate greed. But now, corporate polluters are pushing leaders like Senator Brown into gutting the Clean Air Act -- a political compromise that would cost lives and hamstring efforts to cut climate pollution nationwide.