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Sen. Carper's Plan To Cut Black Carbon Passes Full Senate Today

Carper Amendment to Interior Appropriations Bill Directs EPA to Study Black Carbon Emissions to Improve Public Health & Reduce Global Warming

Sep 24 2009

WASHINGTON – The full Senate late Thursday approved legislation that included an important amendment by Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del) directing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to study the environmental impact of black carbon, and to find the most cost-effective ways to reduce its emissions to improve public health and reduce global warming.
 
“Our amendment to reduce black carbon emissions is a win-win solution to lessen the threat of global warming and improve global public health,” Sen. Carper said. “We must act to reduce black carbon – a dangerous pollutant emitted by old, dirty diesel engines like those in some school buses and thought to be the second largest contributor to global warming after carbon dioxide.”
 
While black carbon in the United States comes mainly from old, dirty diesel engines, internationally, black carbon comes from old cook stoves, inefficient industrial process and from dirty diesel engines.
 
“Our amendment builds on the progress we have already made to use our resources wisely to reduce black carbon emissions at home and abroad,” Sen. Carper said.
 
The black carbon study will be due to the Congress one year after this legislation is enacted into law later this year.
 
The Carper amendment, very similar to his original bipartisan bill S. 849, was included in the Senate Interior Appropriations Bill (H.R. 2996), which passed the Senate by a vote of 77-21.
 
Specifically, the amendment directs the EPA to do a four-phase study that identifies 1) global and domestic black carbon sources and cost-effective reduction technologies; 2) the public health, economic and climate impacts of black carbon; 3) opportunities for current and possible international funding for mitigation; and 4) opportunities for future research and development.
 
A final version of this Interior appropriations bill will be sent to the President later this year to sign into law, once it has been reconciled with a House version of the bill.