US climate pledge faces test in Senate with global impact

US climate pledge faces test in Senate with global impact


WASHINGTON (AP) — After talking the climate talk at U.N. negotiations in Scotland, the Biden administration now tests whether a divided United States can walk the climate walk: push a massive investment for a new era of clean energy through the narrowest of margins in the Senate.

The House passed a roughly $2 trillion social policy and climate bill Friday, including $555 billion for cleaner energy, although the legislation is almost certain to be changed by the Senate. What ultimately emerges in the climate part of the bill will have a lasting impact on America and all its neighbors on Earth, and help determine whether the United States does its promised share to keep climate damage at a level not disastrously worse than it is now.

“The problem is that when you have these storms that are coming with such frequency, just as soon as you deal with one, you're dealing with the next one,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, who has struggled with five federally declared disasters in his six years leading the global oil hub on Texas' Gulf Coast.

Turner talked on the sidelines of the U.N. conference in Glasgow, where he was one of dozens of mayors pushing for investment in climate. After years of storm deaths in intensifying deluges and hurricanes from the tropics, Houston residents froze to death in record numbers in a wobbling polar vortex this year.

“And so for our vulnerable communities ... where people are already on the margins, it keeps getting a little bit further down,” Turner said.

In the Senate, cost-cutting demands by Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin from the coal state of West Virginia and that chamber’s strict rules seem certain to force significant changes to the bill. That would prompt fresh disputes between party centrists and moderates that will likely take...

Full Article