WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senators John Kerry (D-Mass) and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) today reintroduced their aggressive bipartisan legislation to reduce the emissions of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. The "Global Warming Reduction Act" sets forceful greenhouse gas emissions targets that leading scientists say are the best way to keep temperatures below the danger point. Besides just capping pollution, the Kerry-Snowe plan promotes incentives to buy efficient products that reduce greenhouse gas emissions for American homes, businesses and roads.

Kerry and Snowe also announced that they would hold a hearing on the role of small business in slowing climate change in the next few weeks, in their capacity as the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

"It's time to take serious action on this issue. Our bill does that by proposing the most far-reaching, bipartisan plan to limit greenhouse gas emissions, to create new and enhanced tax credits for ordinary Americans who invest in energy-efficient technologies and offer new funds for research and development on cleaner, more efficient vehicles," said Kerry.

"Although President Bush just noticed that the earth is heating up, the American public, every reputable scientist and other world leaders have long recognized that global warming is real and it's serious. The time to act is now."

"The issue of global warming is no longer a question of science - it is now a question of political will," Snowe said. "Global warming is a comprehensive problem that demands a comprehensive solution. The Global Warming Reduction Act is that solution. It is realistic, aggressive, science based approach to tackling this issue without putting a stranglehold on our economy. This legislation is the right course at the right cost, and we can no longer afford the price of inaction."

Global Warming Reduction Act Highlights:
  • Requires that the U.S. freeze emissions in 2010 and then calls for a gradual reduction each year to 65 percent below 2000 emissions levels by 2050. The bill achieves these targets through a flexible, economy-wide cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Provides immediate incentives to reduce emissions, producing direct results in the near-term.

  • Requires that passenger vehicles reduce their global warming pollution.

  • Includes measures to advance technology and reduce emissions through clean, renewable energy and energy efficiency in the transportation, industrial and residential sectors.

  • Requires the US to derive 20% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.

  • Includes a resolution expressing the urgent need for President Bush to re-engage in international climate negotiations.

  • Establishes a National Climate Change Vulnerability and Resilience Program to help communities assess their vulnerability to climatic changes and shorter term climatic variations - including changes and variations resulting from human activities - and better prepare for it.