Today the Bicameral Task Force on Climate Change released a white paper recommending 20 concrete steps the Department of Energy should take in carrying out the President’s Climate Action Plan. The recommendations include strengthening specific energy efficiency standards, accelerating the development and deployment of low-carbon energy technologies, expanding the use of energy savings performance contracts to save energy at federal facilities, encouraging reforms in state building codes and utility rate structures, maximizing the contribution of power marketing administrations, and analyzing the climate change impacts of liquefied natural gas exports.
These recommendations are based on suggestions submitted to the Bicameral Task Force by over 200 groups ranging from environmental organizations and efficiency advocates to electric utilities and Fortune 500 companies. They also reflect input from former DOE officials, leading academics, and experts from think tanks.
“The future of our environment and our economy require that we respond to the climate threat with seriousness and urgency. Supporting the scientific research that results in new, efficient technologies to move us away from fossil fuels is a crucial step in the battle against climate change that will also boost our economy by creating a new sector of inherently domestic jobs,” said Sen. Ben Cardin.
“We recommend that the Department of Energy use its broad authorities to address the urgent threat of climate change,” said Rep. Henry A. Waxman. “The Department of Energy should quickly take the steps outlined in the report, which would reduce carbon pollution while creating jobs and saving consumers money.”
“This report provides a roadmap for the Department of Energy as it implements President Obama’s climate change plan,” said Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse. “The steps we outline would accelerate the development of clean, renewable energy; improve energy efficiency; and reduce dangerous carbon pollution. I look forward to working with Secretary Moniz as DOE ramps up its work to address this serious threat.”
“These recommendations are based on the research of experts who know energy issues and climate change intimately,” said Rep. Bobby L. Rush. “We want to work closely with the DOE to bring awareness and real action on a myriad of energy issues and we hope to accomplish that through these recommendations. We thank the President for setting a clear climate change agenda and look forward to working with his administration on these issues.”
“The President’s plan to address climate change is an important vision for America. Now we need to move forward to help the President implement his vision. This report outlines steps that the Department of Energy can undertake which will reduce our carbon emissions, spur innovation, and support a clean energy economy. I look forward to working with my colleagues to support these simple, commonsense steps,” said Rep. Earl Blumenauer.
The Bicameral Task Force on Climate Change, founded in January 2013, focuses on drawing congressional and public attention to climate change and developing effective policy responses to this urgent challenge. The current co-chairs are Sen. Ben Cardin, Rep. Henry A. Waxman, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, Rep. Bobby L. Rush, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, and Sen. Ed Markey. Additional information on the Task Force is available online here.
The report is available online here.