Obama Will Focus On Energy Bill After Bank Reform
Author: Jeff Mason and Ross Colvin
President Barack Obama said on Friday his administration would shift its focus to climate and energy legislation after finishing financial regulatory reform, which he said would take a few more weeks.
"This is one of these foundational priorities from my perspective that has to be done soon," Obama said, referring to energy legislation at a meeting of chief executives and other officials who make up part of his outside economic advisory board.
The House of Representatives passed a bill last year that would require the United States to reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases by 17 percent by 2020 compared to 2005 levels.
The Senate has not passed a similar measure but a bipartisan group of senators including Democrat John Kerry, Republican Lindsey Graham and independent Joe Lieberman are expected to produce a bill in the coming weeks.
"As has been noted, there's been a good bipartisan discussion taking place within the Senate around a mechanism that would put a prize on carbon," Obama said.
"In terms of timing, financial regulatory reform will take several more weeks and then, you know, we'll probably be transitioning next to look at what can be done on the energy front."
Obama urged business leaders to voice their support for climate legislation to lawmakers.
Some environmentalists have questioned how big a priority Obama will make climate legislation on his long list of domestic policy priorities.
(Editing by John O'Callaghan)