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Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW), has released the text of the Chairman's Mark of the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act (S. 1733).

New and revised language in the Chairman's Mark include the following:

- increases investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy,

- specifies distribution of emissions allowances,

- ensures that the majority of investments in the bill are for consumer protection,

- reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increases investments in the transportation sector, and

- increases the size of the market stability reserve.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) also released a detailed economic analysis of the legislation, which found no significant change in the estimated cost to American families, compared with H.R.2454, the Waxman-Markey legislation passed this summer by the House of Representatives.

EPA's analysis of the House bill found that "average household consumption would be reduced by less than 1% in all years" compared with a business-as-usual scenario, and estimated the overall impact on the average household would be $0.22 to $0.30 per day ($80 to $111 per year).

The EPW began legislative hearings this week on the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act. Senators will hear testimony from nine panels totaling 54 witnesses over the course of three days. Boxer has indicated that the EPW Committee will mark up the legislation as soon as possible following the completion of legislative hearings.

Meanwhile, a poll released by CNN/Opinion Research Corp. shows that 60% of respondents favor a cap-and-trade plan in which the federal government would limit the amount of GHG that companies could produce in factories or power plants. Thirty-seven percent oppose the proposal, which would penalize companies that exceed GHG limits with fines or by making those businesses pay money to other companies that producer smaller amounts of pollution.

The survey indicates a generational divide, with 68% of Americans under age 50 supporting cap and trade, but those 50 and older are split on the issue.

The poll also suggests a partisan divide, with three in four Democrats backing the proposal and nearly six in 10 independents on board as well, but only four in 10 Republicans support cap and trade.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll was conducted Oct. 16-18, with 1,038 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

SOURCES: Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, CNN


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