"The Senate climate debate shifts into a higher gear this week as advocates look beyond the partisan gridlock that engulfed the Environment and Public Works Committee and onto the broader quest of finding 60 votes for floor passage.
Tomorrow [Tuesday], the Finance and Energy and Natural Resources committees dive into the issue with a pair of simultaneous hearings on climate policy.
On Finance, Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) will study the job implications of global warming legislation with testimony from a major labor union, economists, and the nuclear power and electric utility industry. Baucus has said he may hold a markup this year on the trade provisions of a climate bill and address how to distribute greenhouse gas emission allowances among regulated industries.
Up one floor in the Dirksen Senate Office Building, Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) will lead a wide-ranging discussion on legislation options for tackling climate change. Bingaman already passed a bipartisan energy bill (S. 1462 (pdf)) out of his committee earlier this year but remains a key player as lawmakers study whether to take an even broader pass at setting a first-ever mandatory limit on U.S. greenhouse gas emissions."