The US Senate is currently discussing climate change legislation known as Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act (CEJAP). This legislation, along with the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), will lay the foundation for the U.S.' negotiating position in the international climate change treaty to be drafted in Copenhagen. The committee pioneering the effort is the Environment and Public Works Committee chaired by Senator Barbara Boxer. The bills, however, conflict with certain policies of tribal governments. For example, since a component of ACES is a nationwide cap and trade program, there is confusion over who has claim to certain stocks of carbon in some of the country's forests. This ambiguity over the beneficiaries of such a program has sparked debate between tribal governments and the federal government. Therefore, the Environmental Diplomacy Project drafted and the Quinault Indian Nation submitted formal letters requesting incorporation of specific tribal language for the new Senate bill to Senators Baucus, Inhofe, Boxer, Murkowski, Bingaman and Grassley. CWIS has written and submitted congressional testimony on this legislation, advocating for indigenous people's rights in the United States and internationally.
December 07, 2009