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 September 22, 2015 - 2:25 PM EDT
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Senate Democrats unveil ambitious energy bill

WASHINGTON, Sept. 22 (UPI) --

Senate Democrats revealed a proposal Tuesday offering a comprehensive energy policy designed to use new technology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The proposed bill, organized by Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., provides tax policy changes, emission-reduction goals and research in policy guidelines meant to show support for President Barack Obama's assertive energy strategy. The legislative plan calls for greenhouse gas emissions to be cut by two percent per year through 2025, a greater reduction than Obama's target.

The bill, called the American Energy Innovation Act of 2015, is also a response to Republican ideas, which, Democrats claim, remain fixed on maximizing of fossil fuel production without consideration of the environment.

It is a technology-driven pathway to a clean energy future, and by tackling energy efficiency ranging from everywhere from trucks, buildings, to our electricity grid, to energy innovation, it basically takes the most important opportunities for reducing carbon, creating jobs, and moving us forward to help consumers have better choices. It is an actionable path that we think can get implemented. We are making important investments in science and clean energy technology so that the U.S. can lead in clean energy, Cantwell said Tuesday at the Capitol.

The bill features incentives and funding to create clean energy, and changes in the current tax code Democrats say favor fossil fuel production at the expense of renewable energy.

Our proposal today throws an outdated, stagnant set of tax rules in the garbage can, said Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. In our view, it is long past time to replace this broken mess with a market-oriented system that supports American innovators with fresh, creative ideas.

Cantwell suggested the bill would also create 3.5 million new jobs in the United States.

While the bill is unlikely to be passed by the current Republican-controlled Congress, Democrats believe forceful support of climate change policies could win them control of the Senate in 2016.

Source: United Press International (September 22, 2015 - 2:25 PM EDT)

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