Climate Bill Appears Stalled In Senate The measure to remake the energy economy and limit greenhouse gases has run aground in Congress. The Republican sponsor of the measure, South Carolina's Lindsey Graham, is withdrawing his support because Democrats are taking up immigration legislation.
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Climate Bill Appears Stalled In Senate

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Climate Bill Appears Stalled In Senate

Climate Bill Appears Stalled In Senate

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STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

Workers who risk their lives in West Virginia's mines are part of the energy economy. President Obama wants to remake that economy. He favors a plan to encourage more energy alternatives - and a bill to do that is now stuck in the Senate. The bill had a Republican sponsor, South Carolina's Lindsay Graham. That seemed to give it at least a chance of passing. Now Graham says he will withdraw his support. He's unhappy that Democrats are taking up an unrelated bill on immigration first. NPR's Christopher Joyce has more.

CHRISTOPHER JOYCE: Eileen Claussen directs the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.

EILEEN CLAUSSEN: There are provisions for offshore drilling with revenue sharing. There are provisions for loan guarantees - I think for another 10 nuclear power plants - that was not in the House bill. You can argue that they're legitimate in themselves, but they're also an attempt to make this more positive, to get moderate Democrats to want to do this, and Republicans.

JOYCE: But Claussen says the bill still needs at least some GOP support.

CLAUSSEN: If Senator Graham is gone and actually does not reemerge here, it makes it very, very difficult to get anything done.

JOYCE: Many business groups have also pinned their hopes on this climate bill. Tom Kuhn is president of the Edison Electric Institute, which represents utility companies. Kuhn says the bill at least gives businesses a road map of the future before they build new power plants.

TOM K: We all know that there is an objective to move to lower carbon fuels in the future, and it is extremely important for us when we're making billions of dollars worth of investments to have the certainty.

JOYCE: Kate Offringa with the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association says the bill contains language that could be good for her members.

KATE OFFRINGA: For one thing, a provision that would require building codes at the state and local level to increase their energy efficiency requirements over a short timeframe.

JOYCE: Christopher Joyce, NPR News.

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