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United States

US climate change laws set for delay

US: Hopes are fading for comprehensive climate and energy legislation, several media outlets report.

Expected US climate change bills not expected to make Congress
Expected US climate change bills not expected to make Congress
Senate majority leader Harry Reid has stopped saying he will introduce a bill next week, and now refuses to commit to a timeline, according to Politico.

"We’re going to make a decision in the near future," the website quoted Reid as saying.

Reid told Politico that Senate Democrats will discuss the bill’s timing at a meeting on Thursday.

The Washington Post said Reid will share the bill with Democrats and some Republicans on Tuesday, but the measure doesn’t have enough votes to pass.

Senator Dianne Feinstein of California has urged fellow Democrats to postpone action on the bill until the fall, according to the Associated Press.

Reid had been trying to push legislation through before the August recess.

But some congressmen said pushing such legislative work closer to the 2 November elections would make the bill even less likely to pass, the AP reported.

It is still unclear exactly what Reid’s bill will contain, though many in the wind industry hope it will include both a renewable electricity standard (RES) and a cap-and-trade system for carbon.

A national RES would require utilities to procure a certain percentage of their electricity from clean sources.

The House of Representatives passed climate and energy legislation, including cap-and-trade measures and an RES of 20% by 2020, in May 2009.

The Senate energy and natural resources committee then passed an RES of 15% by 2020.

A separate bill by Democrat John Kerry and independent Joe Lieberman called for cuts in greenhouse gas emissions but no RES.

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