What is this global warming thing again?
When coal, gas and oil are burned, they produce carbon dioxide that builds up in the atmosphere and traps the sun's heat. Much of this greenhouse gas released today remains in the atmosphere after even 100 years, trapping more and more heat.
So, it's a bit warmer...why does that matter?
Unless we reduce the pollution that causes global warming, temperatures could climb between 2-10 degrees F this century. Such a rapid rise in temperature would fundamentally reshape the planet's climate, forever changing the landscape and water resources people and wildlife depend upon.
For example, polar bears depend on ice to hunt for seals. However the Arctic is melting at a rapid pace, making it harder and harder for the bears to get food.
How will the Climate Security Act reduce global warming pollution?
The Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act not only sets specific requirements for reducing global warming pollution, it also sets up how power plants and other big emitters will reach this goal.
Starting within four years, the bill will require a steady reduction in emissions year after year, bringing America's global warming pollution levels to 70% below current levels by the year 2050.
By using a "cap-and-trade" system pioneered under the Clean Air Act, the Climate Security Act sets up a flexible system where businesses that reduce pollution will pay less for tradable emission "allowances." This encourages innovation, advances clean energy technologies and creates millions of "green collar" jobs across America.
Why is this bill so important to protect wildlife?
By slashing global warming pollution, the bill helps slow and stop global warming. Also, the tradable emission allowances from the cap-and-trade system will generate billions of dollars in polluter payments. The government will distribute this money in ways that boost wildlife conservation, help families with their energy bills, bolster technology research and create job opportunities.
Wildlife conservation efforts are facing new threats from global warming. This bill makes an unprecedented investment in protecting wildlife habitat and ensuring wildlife managers and projects get the leg up they need.
Stay tuned to find out how you can help the National Wildlife Federation pass the Climate Security Act!