Joseph Lieberman on Energy and the Environment
Opposition to Drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf
In July of 2006, Senator Lieberman joined with numerous other Senators to propose an amendment that would ban offshore drilling in the outer continental shelf until 2022. Their intentions are noted in a letter to Senate Majority leader Frist.
Dear Majority Leader Frist:
We are writing to voice our support for continuing the long-standing outer continental shelf oil and gas drilling moratorium not touched by S.3711 and to urge you to allow the Senate to vote on our amendment to S. 3711, which would extend the moratorium off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the continental United States until the year 2022.
Our beaches and coastline are economic and environmental treasures for each of our states. They are the homes for millions, and they protect the homes of millions more. They are the foundation of thriving tourist economies, provide habitat and shelter for countless species of wildlife, and support a robust commercial and recreational fishing industry. They are where the residents of our states live, work, and play, and every year we welcome countless visitors from across the nation and around the world to share in their beauty.
But they are also exceptionally fragile, and we are committed to fighting to protect them. A single oil spill could lay waste to huge sections of coastline, fatal both to wildlife and a state’s economy. Each year we fight to continue the moratorium against oil and gas drilling off our shores, but we see this moratorium under repeated attack in the House of Representatives, which has recently passed a bill, H.R. 4761, that would eliminate it completely.
We are particularly concerned that if S. 3711 passes, it will be subject to a conference with H.R. 4761, where many of the most onerous provisions in that bill could be included in a conference report. The elimination of the long-standing coastal moratorium is something that none of us would be able to allow, and we believe that the only way to reliably protect our coasts is to enact a long-term legislative moratorium.
We therefore respectfully urge you to allow us to offer and vote on the Menendez-Snowe-Feinstein amendment to S. 3711 and to prevent any weakening of the outer continental shelf moratorium in a conference committee with the House of Representatives. Thank you for your consideration of these requests.
Oil Company and Alternative Energy Subsidies
On March 29, 2012 the Senate voted on a cloture motion on legislation to end subsidies to oil companies and to continue subsidies in alternative energy that are scheduled to end. Specifically, the bill would have ended or limited subsidies to oil and natural gas companies while extending subsides for wind companies and biofuel companies. The legislation failed to pass a cloture motion through a mostly party line vote. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of ending oil subsidies.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of ending oil subsidies.
Keystone Pipeline Approval
In March of 2012, the Senate voted on an amendment proposed by Senator Hoeven to approve the Keystone pipeline project. The amendment passed 56-42 with the support of all Republicans and 1/5 of the Democrats. Joseph Lieberman voted against approving the Keystone Pipeline project.
Joseph Lieberman voted against approving the Keystone Pipeline project.
Keystone Pipeline - Presidential Waiver
In March of 2012, the Senate voted on an amendment proposed by Senator Wyden to prohibit oil produced in Canada and transported in any part of the Keystone pipeline from being exported unless the President waived the provision. The amendment failed 33-65 with the opposition of all Republicans and 2/5 of the Democrats. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of approving presidential waiver to the Keystone pipeline.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of approving presidential waiver to the Keystone pipeline.
Cap and Trade
Cap and Trade is the name given to a government program to issue carbon credits to all companies. The company is limited to using only the amount of carbon issued to them by the government (the cap). If a company uses more, it can purchase additional carbon offsets from a company that has not used all their credits, or it can purchase credits from compainies which perform carbon offsets such as planting trees (the trade). The legislation passed the house but not enough senators supported the legislation to end a filibuster in the Senate. To prevent Senate Democrats from using a reconciliation technique to pass the bill with only 50 votes, Senate Republicans introduced an amendment stating oppositon to the use of reconciliation for cap and trade. The amendment passed with the support of all Republicans and about 2/3 of the Democrats. Joseph Lieberman voted against the amendment and thus supported using reconciliation to pass cap-and-trade.
Joseph Lieberman voted against the amendment and thus supported using reconciliation to pass cap-and-trade.
Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008
In September of 2008, The US Senate passed the Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008. The Act created tax incentives for energy production and conservation. The bill was largely supported by the Democrats and largely opposed by the Republicans. The bill passed the House'); echo(' in May of 2008, and passed the Senate with widespread support in a 93-2 vote. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008.
Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007
Among other things, the Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007 removed oil & gas exploration subsidies. The bill passed the House in January and passed the Senate in June. In the House, the bill was supported by almost all Democrats and opposed by a majority of Republicans. After passing the House, the bill got the support of most Democrats and roughly half of the Republicans, passing in a 65-27 vote. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection, and Energy Efficiency Act of 2007.
Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act of 2006
The Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act of 2006 was an attempt to open up more areas of the Gulf of Mexico for oil drilling. It passed the Senate with broad support in a 72-25 vote. However, it was not raised in the House. Joseph Lieberman cast a "No Vote"
Amendment - Reduction of Oil Dependence
In June of 2005, the Senate voted on an amendment to reduce oil importation in the US by 40% by 2025. The would have raised the original goals set in the bill form a 1 million barrel per day reduction to a 7.6 million barrel per day reduction. This would most likely be achieved through increased CAFE standards of 78 miles per gallon in cars and a 185-percent increase in light trucks. The voted failed 47-53. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the amendment.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the amendment.
Amendment - ANWR Fast Track
In March of 2003, the US Senate voted on an amendment to prevent fast-tracking of drilling in ANWR. The amendment passed 52-48. Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the amendment and thus opposed ANWR drilling.
Joseph Lieberman voted in favor of the amendment and thus opposed ANWR drilling.
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge amendment
In April of 2002, the Senate voted on an amendment to allow ANWR to be opened up for drilling. The full amendment was a separate piece of legislation that dictated the amount of land to be leased, the amount to be reimbursed to native Alaskans, an amount to be traded with Israel, and numerous other provisions. The amendmnent failed to pass the Senate 46-54. Joseph Lieberman voted against the amendment to open up ANWR to drilling.
Joseph Lieberman voted against the amendment to open up ANWR to drilling.
Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation
Amends the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 to designate a portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in Alaska as a component of the National Wilderness Preservation System under the Wilderness Act.
Amends the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to reauthorize and extend funding for FY2012-FY2016 a grant program for reducing diesel emissions. Authorizes the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to: (1) provide contracts and rebates to eligible entities to achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions; and (2) support rebate programs administered by states that are designed to achieve such reductions.
A resolution expressing the sense of the Senate regarding the need for the United States to address global climate change through the negotiation of fair and effective international commitments.
Amends the Clean Air Act to approve the application of the state of California for a waiver of federal preemption of its motor vehicle emission standards.
A bill to improve passenger automobile fuel economy and safety, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce dependence on foreign oil, and for other purposes.
A bill to amend the Sherman Act to make oil-producing and exporting cartels illegal.
A bill to direct the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to establish a program to decrease emissions of greenhouse gases, and for other purposes.
A bill to promote the national security and stability of the United States economy by reducing the dependence of the United States on oil through the use of alternative fuels and new technology, and for other purposes.
A bill to provide for a program of scientific research on abrupt climate change, to accelerate the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States by establishing a market-driven system of greenhouse gas tradeable allowances, to limit greenhouse gas emissions in the United States and reduce dependence upon foreign oil, and ensure benefits to consumers from the trading in such allowances.
Expresses the sense of Congress that the United States should demonstrate international leadership in reducing the health, environmental, and economic risks posed by climate change by: (1) reducing greenhouse gas emissions; (2) generating climate-friendly technologies; (3) participating in negotiations under the United Nations (UN) Framework Convention on Climate Change to achieve long-term reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions; and (4) supporting the establishment of a long-term objective to prevent the global average temperature from increasing by greater than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit above preindustrial levels.
A bill to improve efficiency in the Federal Government through the use of high-performance green buildings, and for other purposes.
Session-109; Bill Number-S Res 312; A resolution expressing the sense of the Senate regarding the need for the United States to address global climate change through the negotiation of fair and effective international commitments. - Cosponsor
xpresses the sense of the Senate that the United States should act to reduce risks posed by global climate change and to foster economic growth by: (1) participating in negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and leading efforts in other international fora with the objective of securing U.S. participation in agreements that advance and protect U.S. interests, that establish mitigation commitments by all countries that are major emitters of greenhouse gases, that establish flexible international mechanisms to minimize the cost of efforts by participating countries, and that achieve a significant long-term reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions; and (2) establishing a bipartisan Senate observer group to monitor international negotiations on climate change and to ensure that the advice and consent function of the Senate is exercised to facilitate timely consideration of any applicable treaty.
Amends the Internal Revenue Code to advance the termination date of the income and excise tax credits for alcohol fuel mixtures (ethanol) from December 31, 2011, to the later of June 30, 2011, or the enactment of this Act. Amends the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States to allow, on or after June 30, 2011, duty-free treatment for ethyl alcohol or any mixture containing ethyl alcohol (ethanol).