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need to put a highly qualified teacher in every classroom in each school in which 50 percent or more of the children are from low income families. over the next 4 years;
(2) provide 125.000 new teachers with mentors and year-long supervised internships: and
(3) provide high quality pedagogical training for every teacher in every school.
I would like to focus on the latter. and discuss recent decisions by the administration regarding the international negotiations. Climate change cannot be discussed in complete isolation from the soon-to-be released energy plan, since the issue of climate change must be addressed both domestically and internationally.
I wish to note, at the outset, that I applaud the administration's support for clean coal technologies and the administration's recognition that coal is one of our country's most important sources of energy. I recognize and strongly support this policy by the executive branch. A bill I have introduced this session, S. 60, the National Electricity and Environmental TechThe PRESIDING OFFICER. Without nology Act, addresses the challenges objection, it is so ordered. faced by coal, and I would welcome the Mr. JEFFORDS. Mr. President, I sug- administration's active support to atigest the absence of a quorum.
The PRESIDING OFFICER.
clerk will call the roll.
lize coal in a cleaner, more efficient I also believe, however, that it would The assistant legislative clerk pro- be a mistake to focus too heavily just
ceeded to call the roll.
Mr. DODD. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum call be rescinded.
on increasing fuel supplies from domes-
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without
objection, it is so ordered.
(b) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out title II Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965
(1) $3,500,000,000 for fiscal year 2003; (2) $4,000,000.000 for fiscal year 2004; (3) $4,500.000.000 for fiscal year 2005; (4) $5,000.000.000 for fiscal year 2006: (5) $5.500.000.000 for fiscal year 2007: (6) $6.000.000.000 for fiscal year 2008.
not explain how domestic climate
Mr. JEFFORDS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that there now be a period for morning business, with Senators permitted to speak for up to 10 minutes each.
Mr. DODD. Mr. President, is morning business the pending business?
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator is correct, with a 10-minute limitation.
Mr. DODD. I gather our colleague and friend from West Virginia may be
here shortly, as he is inclined to do on Fridays for periods of enlightenment. I encourage Members to listen carefully to the distinguished senior Senator from West Virginia. He always has the most interesting discussions on history and poetry and important national holidays and days of recognition. It is worthy of the Senate's attention for those who may be following the debate through the channels of public communication.
develop new domestic sources such as
I am concerned, based upon preliminary reports, that the administration's plan may not reflect such a balanced and farsighted perspective. Let me begin by noting the obvious the primary, manmade cause of global warming is the burning of the very fossil fuels that power virtually the entire world.
May 4, 2001
trations, if we are to confront and overcome this awesome challenge in our children's time and in our grandchildren's lifetime.
But this takes visionary leadership. It would take extraordinary leadership. We need more than just small, incre mental increases in our domestic oil supplies or in our existing research and development programs. This is an approach which only pays lip service to the challenge that we face. It is a huge challenge. I hope that the administration's plan will take a broader view.
We must also recognize that the European Union, China, and other developing nations are quick to point the finger at us, at the world's largest contributor to global warming. We must demonstrate our resolve, and begin to get our own house in order by launching such a research and development effort, as well as continuing and expanding our current efforts to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
However, it should also be noted that China will soon surpass us as the largest emitter of greenhouse gases. The Chinese Government must stop blocking all forward movement on the question of developing country participation. The developing world is poorly served by the current level of Chinese intransigence. The poorest nations in the developing world-which will be those that are hardest hit by global warming during this century-must demand leadership from within their own ranks, and especially from China. The Chinese leadership must join us in honestly discussing solutions to the problem of climate change. The United States can develop and provide the technological breakthroughs that can be deployed by all nations, as we move forward together to solve this common, global problem.
Here is part of the power just above us as we look up to the ceiling of the Senate Chamber and see these lights. What is required, then, is the equivalent of an industrial revolution. We must develop new and cleaner technologies to burn fossil fuels as well as new methods to capture and sequester greenhouse gases, and we must develop renewable technology that is practical and cost-eff ctive. Rarely has mankind been confronted with such a challenge-a challenge to improve how we power our economy. This is the greatest nation in the world when the issue is one of applying our engineering talents to push beyond the next incremental improvement, and, instead, visualize and then achieve major leaps forward. We can do this, if only we apply ourselves. The scale and the scope of the problem are enormous, as is the leadership that will be required by the current administration, and, for
However, I want to emphatically warn that new technologies and voluntary approaches will not by themselves solve this problem. We must also actively negotiate and ratify international agreements that include binding commitments for all of the largest emitters of greenhouse gases, if we are to have any hope of solving one of the world's one of humanity's greatest challenges.
This concern takes me back to the Senate's actions just 4 years ago. During the Senate floor debate over Senate Resolution 98 in July 1997, I expressed two fundamental beliefs that have guided my approach on the issue of climate change. First, while some scientific uncertainties remain, I believe that there is significant, mounting evidence that mankind is altering the world's climate. Second, the voluntary approach of the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, commonly known as the Rio Convention, has failed, as almost all of the nations of the world, including the United States, have been unable to meet their obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels. With
May 4, 2001
what needs to be done in a binding fashion to begin to address this global issue the preeminent environmental challenge of our time.
On July 25, 1997, the Senate passed, by a vote of 95-0, S. Res. 98 which stated that, first, developing nations, especially the largest emitters, must agree to binding emission reduction commitments at the same time as industrialized nations and, second, any international climate change agreement must not result in serious harm to the U.S. economy. That resolution served as guidance to U.S. negotiators as they prepared to hammer out the details of the Kyoto Protocol.
Senator HAGEL and I were the prime cosponsors of that resolution.
The adoption of that resolution was perhaps. a dose of reality-laying out, in advance of the completion of the Kyoto negotiations or the anticipated submission of a climate change treaty to the Senate, just what an administration-any administration-would need to win the Senate's advice and consent. Contrary to statements made by some in this administration, the Senate has never voted on the Kyoto Protocol, although the protocol, in its current form, does not meet the requirements of S. Res. 98.
Since that vote in July 1997, international climate change negotiations have covered a wide range of topics in an attempt to craft a balanced treaty. While there have been some important gains and there have been some unfortunate setbacks from the U.8. perspective, I am concerned that, in the Bush administration's zeal to reject Kyoto for its failure to comply with S. Res. 98, the baby is being thrown out with the bath water through complete abandonment of the negotiating process. Such an abandonment would be very oostly to U.S. leadership and credibility and could force the international community to go back to "square one" on certain critical issues such as carbon sequestration and market-based mechanisms areas which I believe are critical to any future binding climate change treaty.
Still, an examination even of Kyoto's drawbacks can provide the basis for forward movement by the Bush administration.
Recently, we have heard talk by the
Let me say that again. An examination, even of Kyoto's drawbacks, can provide the basis for forward movement by the Bush administration.
For example, U.S. negotiators should go back to the negotiating table with proposals that could be achieved internationally. In my opinion, an effective and binding international agreement must include several elements. First, the initial binding emission reduction targets and caps should be economically and environmentally achievable. Such an international agreement should specify increments by which the initial reduction could be racheted downward and made more stringent over time. This architecture could pro
S4395 nations can grow in a more efficient, environmentally sound manner while also making commitments to reduce their fair share of this global climate change burden.
Using this approach, the Bush administration has a historic opportunity to shape, rather than cripple, the international climate change debate by negotiating an agreement that includes all of the largest emitters of greenhouse gases on a global basis.
It is a huge task no doubt, but it is a huge problem, and it confronts the world, not just he occidental but also the oriental-not just the West but also the East. Such an agreement must also include market mechanisms that are unencumbered by layers of bureaucracy; strong provisions for domestic and international sinks, sequestration, and projects that prevent deforestation; and tough enforcement and compliance requirements.
Additionally, as I explained at the
But any such agreement must also be met by an honest effort on America's domestic front. I am, therefore, very concerned that the President's overall budget does not adequately provide the level of funding necessary to support programs and policies that would address U.S. energy and climate change challenges. So I urge the Bush Adininistration to include all relevant policy aspects in the energy needs assessment currently under review and to examine the total costs-both economic and environmental-in any national energy strategy. I hope the President will work with Congress on these critical issues to develop a constructive, longterm negotiating path for the future. America leads the world in so many important areas addressing our global imate change challenges should be front and center.
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I have serions concerns about certain trade policy issues that the Bush administration inherited from its predecessor, but which remain unresolved. I refer to the steel crisis, the failure to formulate a coberent trade policy with respect to China. and the failure to recognize that "fasttrack" trade negotiating authority represents both an unwarranted diminution of the Constitutional authority of Congress and an invitation to our trade partners to accelerate their attack on the framework of fair trade. As I have long maintained, U.S. trade policy cannot be complacent as America's manufacturing plants are moved to low-wage countries, a phenomenon that makes it increasingly difficult for American employers to stay competitive and, at the same time, pay good wages and provide good benefits to their workers. While American workers do benefit from lower prices for imported products, too many have been made worse off. on balance, by globalization. As the columnist Michael Kelly recently pointed out,
Having said that, we are still a body of 100 Members where, on a good day. the Democrats can muster a majority
of 51 votes. So it is obvious we need bfpartisanship; we need cooperation. But I hope this change in the leadership in the Senate will open up our eyes to an array of opportunities that have been missed over the last several years, opportunities to provide better schools, more health care, to give a voice to consumers and families in securing appropriate medical treatment, to give those who are struggling to go to work every day and make a living a chance so succeed in America.
It is a pretty eady agenda; it is pret
ty challenging; but I think we can rise that occasion. I look forward to being part of it.
Mr. President, I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum. The PRESIDING OFFICER. clerk will call the roll.
The The bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for the quorum call be rescinded.
The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. DURBIN). Without objection, it is so or= dered.
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that I may speak out of order for not to exceed 30 minutes. The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
Mr. BYRD. I thank the Chair.
REFLECTIONS ON THE SENATE Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, seeing the current Presiding Officer, the very distinguished senior Senator from Mlinois, in the chair reminds me of the days when I first came to this Chamber. At that time, representing the great State of Illinois was the inimitable Everett
Dirksen, with his unruly, one might say unkempt-at least in appearancehair, his florid and flowery oratory, his mellifluous voice, a master at painting word pictures: Everett Dirksen. I can see him standing there. He was the minority leader. And then on this side of
the aisle, in the next row behind me and across the aisle, sat the other Senator from the State of Illinois, Paul Douglas: Learned, also a great orator. very impressive-the two Senators from Illinois.
Alinois is continuing in that tradition of Dirksen and Douglas. It sends to the Senate the Senator who presently presides, RICHARD DURBIN, formerly a Member of the House of Representatives, who served there with
mittee, who comes to the Senate
Then there is Senator FITZGERALD. I believe he is the youngest Senator in today's Chamber, who came to the U.S. Senate, I believe, as a former member
of the Senate of the State of Illinois. I
hope I am correct. If I am not, I hope the Presiding Officer will indicate by nod that I am in error.
In any event, I express appreciation to the Senator who presently presides for his patience in awaiting my tardy arrival.
I sat in the chair earlier today as the President pro tempore of the Senate, having been elected to that honor by my colleagues, first of all, on this side of the aisle, and then all of my colleagues through a Senate resolution.
Senators are not to speak from the chair. If compliments are to be directed to the Chair or criticism is to be directed to the Chair, the Chair is not supposed to respond. The Chair is only to respond when called upon by way of a parliamentary inquiry or, if necessary, to make a ruling on a point of order. And, of course, it is his or her responsibility to maintain order in the chair. The Chair has the responsibility to maintain, or to restore if necessary, order in the galleries, or in the Senate Chamber, without being called upon by a Senator from the floor. It is the Chair's responsibility to maintain should not await a call by a Senator order in the Senate, and the Chair from the floor for order and decorum; the Chair has that responsibility.
As I sat there earlier today-we, of course, can't call attention to visitors
in the galleries. But there are visitors in the galleries. And as I sat in the chair earlier today watching the visitors in the galleries. I reflected. It is a good time to reflect when one is in the chair and nothing is going on on the floor at a given moment and when no Senator is speaking. It is an excellent time for reflection. As I reflected on the silent audience that sits every day in these galleries-I reflected upon the fact that there in those galleries sit
who send us here, the people who pay the people our auditors-the people us our salaries. Silently they sit viewby Senators, watching over our shouling the Senate, pondering what is said
ders. They are always there.
Sometimes we may be prone to forget that the people are watching, but they are watching. There in the galleries rests the sovereignty of all that is the Government of this Republic.
CLIMATE CHANGE STRATEGY AND TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION ACT OF 2001
June 8, 2001 Washington Post that led with these lines:
Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, this past
Administration officials preparing an alternative to the 1997 global warming agreement that President Bush disavowed in March are focusing on voluntary measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions-an allies in approach unacceptable to most Europe and Japan.
Mr. President, last month, I came to this floor to urge the Bush administration not to abandon the progress of the multiyear international negotiations on global climate change. In particular. I urged this administration not to endanger many of the gains that the United States has made in recent years as it has tried to forge a workable, responsible international climate change agreement. So I welcome the subsequent announcement by administration officials that they intend to par ticipate in talks on the Kyoto Protocol scheduled to take place in Bonn, Germany. in July. But an insistence on the part of the United States strictly on voluntary measures would certainly place in jeopardy such gains and would. I believe, undermine the credibility of our Nation at the bargaining table in the future. I cannot agree with a strategy that abandons consideration of binding commitments in favor of voluntary efforts alone.
I stand here as the chief author of Senate Resolution 98 in 1997, the measure that many on both sides of the debate paint as a fatal blow to ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. I beg to diffor with that depiction. S. Res. 98, in 1997, was the voice of the Senate, the vox populi, the voice of the people through their elected Representatives, providing guidance to the previous ad
ministration-the administration that time as its negotiators labored to hammer out a climate change proposal among various international players. That resolution, which passed by a vote of 95-0, simply stated that any international treaty on climate change must include binding commitments by the developing nations, especially the largest emitters, and also that it must not result in serious harm to the 7.3. economy.
It also called upon the administration to inform the legislative branch. which under the Constitution of the United States is required to approve the ratification of treaties, as to the
estimated costs of commitments by the United States. We want to know what these will cost. And to date, that information has not been forthcoming. That is what we were saying. Tell us what it will cost. Don't sign it; don't sign that protocol until the major emitters among the developing nations of the world have also signed on and have come into the boat with us. They need to sign on with respect to restricting the emissions of greenhouse gases. It must not be the United States alone; it must not be the United States and the developed nations, the industrial nations, alone. We all have a responsi
June 8, 2001
So we said we want the developing nations to get into the same boat with us because they are going to be impacted by the pollution that is emitted into the air, into the atmosphere, because it circles the globe. We are not saying they have to sign up for precisely the same limits we place on ourselves, or to that same degree, but they do need to sign on and get into this boat. Also, we want to know what it is going to cost and what kind of an impact it is going to have on U.S. industries. We don't want our industries to go overseas as a result of an unwise signing of the protocol that would require us to continue to strongly limit ourselves in ways that would encour age manufacturers in this country to gu abroad and to establish themselves in the developing countries. Let's all get into the same boat together. There must be a level field insofar as our industries are concerned. Let's don't drive American industries overseas.
It is a little like smoking a cigar in a room. I used to smoke cigars. I smoked for 35 years. I gave up the habit I said, "I am quitting." The point is that, even though I might have been the only person in the room hoiding a lighted cigar in my hand, everybody else in the room was inhaling the fragrance of that cigar. And it is the same way with greenhouse gases. They do circle the globe. Everybody breathes the same air, not only the emitters, bat also those who not are the emitters.
Had the Senate merely sat on its hands in that instance and allowed an untenable treaty to be submitted for approval, it would have been rejected. That would have been the fatal blow.
The effect of that Senate resolution was not to kill the negotiations-that was not my desire to kill the negotiations-but to help shape them, to strengthen the hand of our negotiators as they tried to reach an agreement that would be acceptable to the American people. No treaty of such magnitude stands any real chance of success in this Nation without the backing of the American people. Our friends in foreign nations surely understand that. There are also some who do not beHieve the proliferation of scientific reports that have been produced in recent years concerning climate change. But the body of evidence tells us that something is occurring in our atmosphere at a proportion that is changing our climate and that the human hand has played a role in affecting that change.
"I have lived a long time", as Benjamin Franklin said wher he stood before the Constitutional Convention, "and the longer I live, the more convincing proof I see that God still gov erns in the affairs of men And so the longer I live, I see that also.
One of the affairs of man" that I see changing is the atmosphere, the circumstances in which we live every day and every night. As one who has lived more than 831⁄2 years, I have seen some
changes taking place out there in the virtually cosmos and around the globe.
I cannot explain those changes. - am not a scientist. But I know that the changes are taking place. The storms are more violent. The storms are more frequent today than they were when I was a lad walking the hills of Wolf Creek in Mercer County, West Virginia. The floods are more frequent. The droughts are more severe, with far more costly results and more often. The forest fires are more frequent, more costly.
The winters have changed. No longer do I experience the snows that I experienced as a boy in southern West Virginia in the mountains and hills. There is still a great deal of snow there, but not like it was 50 years ago, 60 years ago, 70 years ago.
The rains are not as they were. There is something going on out there. The ice masses at the two poles to the north and to the south are diminishing. They are melting. As they melt, oonditions change around the globe. The waters of the seas grow higher. There is something going on out there-I know, and I am concerned about it.
We can waste valuable time debating and quibbling over measurements, methodology. findings, and conclusions, or we can accept the simple reality that is right before our eyes-we feel it, we see it, we hear it, we read about it, we appropriate more moneys because of it-the reality that global warming is occurring.
Today, Mr. President, I am introducing the Climate Change Strategy and Technology Innovation Act of 2001. Senator TED STEVENS, the senior Senator from Alaska, a State that is almost halfway across the globe from where we stand today, has agreed to join me in this effort. This legislation calls for a comprehensive strategy underpinned by credible science and economics that will guide U.S. efforts to address the multifaceted problem of global climate change. This legislation also establishes a major research and development effort intended to develop the bold breakthrough technologies that our country will need to address the challenge of climate change.
This legislation is intended to supplement, rather than replace, other complementary proposals to deal with climate change in the near term on both a national and international level. I also note that this bill is technology neutral. This is not a bill to carve out special benefits for coal or oil or gas or, for that matter, for nuclear, renewables, or any other energy resource or technology. This legislation provides the framework for addressing the climate challenge, reaffirms the ultimate goal of stabilizing atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, and leaves the technology decisions to energy experts and the marketplace.
An understanding as to why this legislation is necessary must begin with an understanding of the fundamental causes of global climate change. It is
$6001 indisputable that atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide. CO2, are rising and that mankind is contributing to this rise.
CO, has never changed. Like H2O, it never changes. H2O. two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen constitute water. Water was the same in the beginning when Adam and Eve strolled the paths of that Earthly paradise. Water was HO, and carbon dioxide was the same, CO2 Neither has changed. There are some things that do not change. That is the reason why I say history repeats itself. Human nature does not change. Cain slew Abel in the heat of a sudden rage, and men are still slaying one another
These rising concentrations drive global climate change, and they are growing as a result of increasing emissions of greenhouse gases. I don't believe I need a scientist to tell me something is going on there. Disturbingly. most greenhouse gases have a very long life span in the atmosphere, ranging from decades to hundreds of years. This means that what is emitted today is added to what was emitted in the 20th century. For example, much of the CO2, much of the carbon dioxide, emitted during the Second World War is still with us today, and, with each rassing year, the concentration is projected to grow to ever-higher levels. So, even if it were possible to stop emitting greenhouse gases today, that would amount to a very small chip in an iceberg of a problem.
It is also important to note that as the concentrations of CO2 grow, the economic impact of the problem significantly increases. This is 2.0. extremely important point, because if we wait until every last bit of uncertainty is resolved, it may well be too late to prevent adverse consequences to the climate system, and it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to take costeffective action.
Conversely, taking action can be costly. Fossil fuels, such as coal, which emit carbon dioxide are the heart of our economic engine. Thus, as our economy grows, WO use more fossil fuels. The President came into West Virginia in the election and advocated spending $2 billion, I believe, on clean coal technology. You are looking at the daddy of clean coal technology. I started that in 1985 with the authorization of $750 million. So I welcome the President's support of clean coal technology.
But there is another side to that coin. I said to the President, I hear they may provide for the costs of additional clean coal technology research by taking it out of fossil fuel research. Please don't do that. That would be robbing Peter to pay Paul.
Yet, that is exactly what happened. The President's budget provides that some of the moneys in fossil fuels research-which means coal, oil, and gas-will be redirected. "Redirected" is the word-that is the key word-redirected to clean coal technology. We are
going to change that, however, and put those moneys back into fossil fuel research. As our economy grows, we use more fossil fuel. Stopping those emissions, even just limiting those ermissions, can have the effect of putting the breaks on a purring economy. And that is not just true of the United States, but of other nations as well, particularly in developing nations where economic growth is steep.
In order to solve the problem, we must develop new and cleaner technologies to burn fossil fuels as well as new methods to capture and sequester greenhouse gases, and we must develop renewable technology that is practical and cost-effective. Such an effort will require visionary leadership. Where there is no vision, the people perish. We need, therefore, muster the strength and the political courage to tackle the climate change challenge in innovative ways.
So the legislation I offer today, cosponsored by my friend, the erstwhile chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, the distinguished senior Senator from Alaska, Mr. STEVENS, calls for the creation of a national strategy to define how we can meet these objectives, and it organizes national research efforts and authorizes funding to accomplish these goals.
Moreover, the legislation would establish a regime of responsibility and accountability in the Federal sector for the development of a national climate change response strategy. The strategy includes four key elements that collectively represent a new paradigm to deal with climate change.
the White House to coordinate and im-
This is the greatest nation in the
I am sure these are matters that will be of some controversy, but we must pause to think of those of our forefathers who responded to the needs of the hour when it was their time to act on behalf of their generation and their children. The responsibility is heavy, but it must be met.
I take this opportunity to thank Senator STEVENS for his support, for his cosponsorship, and for the very great strength which he will add to the effort. It will be a continuing effort. It is going to take a long time. It is a big, big problem, but we can't avoid it because of its bigness. We have to meet it.
The first element defines a range of emission mitigation targets and implementation dates to achieve stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level and at a rate that would prevent dangerous interference with the climate system. The strategy would also evaluate how each of the range of targets could achieve reductions in an economically and environmentally sound manner.
The second element calls for substantially increased private- and publicsector investment in bold, innovative energy technologies.
The third element calls for greater research to understand how we may have already altered the climate and how we can adapt to these changes in the future. It would help us understand, for example, how the changing climate may be affecting farming, in Пlinois, farming in Florida, farming on the verdant hills of West Virginiawhere there might be flooding or drought and how we could best address it.
The fourth element in the paradigm calls for continuing research on the science of climate change to resolve the remaining uncertainties.
To carry out this strategy, this legislation provides for the creation of an administrative structure within the Federal government to accomplish these elements. It creates an office in
Mr. President, I will welcome, as well
I yield the floor.
June 8, 2001
problem. There is something happening
It has been my concern that the present administration, for whatever reason, has chosen not to approach addressing the issue of global climate change through the Kyoto accords. And because the administration has so decided, it is all the more important for leaders such as Senator BYRD and Senator STEVENS to speak out on a phenomenon that, in fact, is occurring.
The scientific community is fairly unanimous. It is not totally unanimous. Because of that, that ta used as an excuse for others to say that global warming is not upon us. That counters all of the scientific evidence and the testimony of a vast majority of the scientific community that it has happened.
We also know that there is, in fact, a correlation, as the distinguished Senator from West Virginia has stated, between the production of CO2 into the atmosphere and global warming. I commend the Senator from West Virginia for offering this legislation to try to get the Nation's mind focused on the problem and a comprehensive effort of trying to determine what we are going to do about it before it is too late.
Mr. NELSON of Florida. Mr. President, I have been spellbound by the remarks of the distinguished Senator from West Virginia, addressing a problem facing planet Earth that all too often we have ignored. Yet as he so cogently has expressed, indeed, it is a
In my previous governmental capacity, in the position of Insurance Commissioner of the State of Florida, I tried to sound the alarm bell, and it was very difficult to get people to pay attention, especially insurance companies that would have a great deal to lose because global warming will canse the rise of the seas. When you come from a State such as mine, that has enormous implications since most of our 16 million population is along the coast of Florida. The increase of global temperature will also cause the inten sity of storms to increase, as well as their frequency.
Florida is a land that we call paradise, but it happens to be a peninsula sticking down into the middle of something known as Hurricane Highway. Hurricanes are a part of our life, and global warming foretells, for us, an increased intensity of hurricanes and an increased frequency of hurricanes. That has enormous implications on not only our lifestyles but our economic activity-particularly in a State such as Florida that has so many miles exposed to water.
Increased global warming also porterds, for the entire globe, the increased likelihood of pestilence and disease, all of which have tremendous impacts on us as a nation if this phe
The Senator is so kind to stay and listen to my remarks which in large part are directed to him in my affection and appreciation for him and his comments and his legislation. But allow me to divert to the recesses of my memory and to my mind's eye.
In 1986, as I looked out the window of the spacecraft Columbia, high above the Earth, in Earth orbit, looking back at home that suddenly, over the course