President Obama headed overseas to collect his Nobel Peace Prize and make his pitch for collective action on climate change. Of course, if our president commits us to any binding agreement to reduce greenhouse gases, our jobs will be heading overseas too.
The Senate’s 1997 Byrd-Hagel Resolution warned not to enter into any global warming treaty, at the time the Kyoto Protocol, which leaves out developing nations or hurts the American economy. Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-CO) is taking Byrd-Hagel one step further by introducing House Resolution 945, which says the U.S. should not be a part of any treaty that would infringe upon our national sovereignty and hurt our economy. Specifically, the resolution says:
(1) the United States should not be a signatory to any protocol or other agreement regarding the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change of 1992, at negotiations in Copenhagen in December 2009 or thereafter, which would–
(A) result in significant harm to the economy of the United States; or
(B) compromise American sovereignty by requiring the United States to submit to decisions of international inspection, compliance, and enforcement mechanisms; and
(2) the United States should demand in any such discussions or negotiations that any protocol or agreement must not mandate new commitments to limit or reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the United States and other Annex I Developed Country Parties without binding, verifiable, and enforceable commitments to limit or reduce greenhouse gas emissions for Developing Country Parties within the same compliance period.
When President Obama returns from Copenhagen, let’s hope he brings American sovereignty with him. For more on the economic consequences of a climate treaty, read Ben Lieberman’s “What Americans Need to Know” and for more on the threat a climate change treaty poses on our nation’s sovereignty, read Steve Groves’ paper, “The Kyoto II Climate Change Treaty.”