How Joe Manchin Shaped the Climate Change Bill – The New York Times

by | Jul 30, 2022 | Climate Change

Asked for comment, Mr. Manchin’s spokeswoman, Sam Runyon, pointed to those provisions as well as another $5 billion in the package that would allow existing coal-fired power plants to improve their efficiency and adopt environmental controls like scrubbers, which remove pollutants from smokestacks. Those measures to help the coal industry, she noted, come on top of $8.5 billion for carbon capture and storage that Mr. Manchin secured as part of a bipartisan infrastructure bill last year.Over a decade ago, Mr. Manchin ran a campaign ad in which he shot a bullet through President Barack Obama’s climate plan, which ultimately failed. So when Mr. Biden took office, he knew that Mr. Manchin would be his biggest obstacle to passing an ambitious climate change bill.At every step of the way, Mr. Manchin shaped the legislation.Many Democrats wanted a clean energy standard that would pay electric utilities to replace coal- and gas-fired power plants with renewable power and that would penalize those that didn’t. But Mr. Manchin opposed the measure, so it was scrapped. He vetoed a plan to provide bigger tax credits for consumers who bought union-made electric vehicles, a measure that was opposed by Toyota Motor, which operates a nonunion plant in West Virginia. And he ensured that the tax credits for electric vehicles could not be used by the wealthiest Americans.Mr. Manchin scaled back but did not eliminate a fee imposed on oil and gas operators for leaks of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, from wells, pipelines and other infra …

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