H.Res. 672 (112th): Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the energy, environmental, and foreign policies of the ...

...United States should reflect appropriate understanding and sensitivity concerning issues related to climate change, as doc

112th Congress, 2011–2013. Text as of May 31, 2012 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

IV

112th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. RES. 672

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 31, 2012

submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce

RESOLUTION

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the energy, environmental, and foreign policies of the United States should reflect appropriate understanding and sensitivity concerning issues related to climate change, as documented by credible scientific findings and as evidenced by the extreme weather events of recent years.

Whereas an overwhelming majority of credentialed scientists, in the United States and abroad, support the findings that climate change is happening and that human activities are a key contributor to it;

Whereas the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has concluded that human emissions of greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide, are responsible for global warming;

Whereas the average surface temperature of the Earth is predicted to increase by 3.2°F to 7.2°F by the end of the 21st century relative to the temperatures experienced in the 1980 to 1990 timeframe;

Whereas the average rate of warming over each inhabited continent is very likely to be at least twice as large as that experienced during the 20th century;

Whereas an increase in temperature will have major adverse impacts on both the natural and man-made environments and cause significant human suffering due to heat waves, prolonged droughts, water scarcity, food insecurity, rising sea-levels, intensification and frequency of extreme weather events, and extinction of some species;

Whereas greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide trap radiation from the sun and warm the planet's surface;

Whereas as concentrations of these gases increase, more warming occurs than would happen naturally;

Whereas in the United States, fossil fuel use accounted for 95 percent of carbon dioxide emissions in 2010;

Whereas the United States was responsible for 18 percent of the estimated 30,313 Teragrams (Tg) of carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere through the global combustion of fossil fuels in 2009 alone;

Whereas the United States relies on electricity to meet a significant portion of its energy demands;

Whereas United States electricity generation from fossil fuels emitted 42 percent of the carbon dioxide from fossil fuel combustion in 2010;

Whereas in order to stabilize the Earth’s climate and prevent catastrophic global climate change, the levels of worldwide carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions need to be reduced;

Whereas many religious faiths in the United States and abroad have issued proclamations about the moral obligation to be good stewards of the Earth and about the moral imperative for action on climate change;

Whereas economists in the United States and abroad recognize the great potential for job creation in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and other innovative practices;

Whereas United States national security experts recognize that climate change acts as an accelerant of instability and conflict;

Whereas public health experts have documented the health impacts of rising temperatures, the expansion of vector borne infectious diseases, risks to worldwide food supplies, as well as the direct physical effects of more frequent and extreme weather events; and

Whereas a growing number of political, scientific, business, and religious leaders believe steps must be taken to avoid catastrophic effects of climate change: Now, therefore, be it

That the House of Representatives—

(1)

acknowledges the scientific findings confirming that climate change is happening;

(2)

acknowledges that human activities are a primary cause of climate change;

(3)

recognizes that climate change poses unacceptable risks to the health, safety, and welfare of the people of current and future generations of the United States;

(4)

accepts its responsibility to safeguard the welfare of the people of the United States;

(5)

acknowledges that the welfare of the people of the United States is best protected by policies that—

(A)

reduce energy consumption and increase energy efficiency;

(B)

shift power supply strategy from oil coal and natural gas to wind, solar, geothermal, and other renewable energy sources to reduce dependence on fossil fuels;

(C)

capture and store carbon by planting and greening of urban landscapes and improving land and forest management practices; and

(D)

help people of the United States and abroad prepare for and withstand the significant impacts of climate change that are already occurring and that are likely to accelerate in years ahead; and

(6)

pledges to promptly introduce and enact legislation to achieve these goals.