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Saturday, June 11, 2005

Nickels v. Bush: Nickels Wins Round 1

Posted by on June 11 at 13:40 PM

About 15 minutes ago, the 20-member Environment Committee at the U.S. Conference of Mayor’s in Chicago passed Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels’s resolution on the Kyoto Protocols with a unanimous voice vote. (Nickels’s reoslution calls for U.S. cities to implement local policies to meet a key component of the Kyoto Protocols: reduce greenhouse gasses 7 percent below 1990 levels by 2012.) It’s a slap at the Bush administration, which withdrew the U.S. from the treaty in 2001. “The mayors of U.S. cities need to provide grass roots leadership on this issue,” Nickels told me on the phone immediately after the vote.
In order to get Nickels’s resolution to a full floor vote on Monday,though, it needs to pass another committee, the Energy Committee, later this afternoon.
Nickels said he was able to pass the resolution out of the Environment Committee over initial objections from the Committee Chair, Mayor Patrick McCrory of Charlotte, NC, by scratching a couple of references to the Kyoto Protocols that seemed like partisan slaps at the Bush administration. However, Nickels says, “I was not willing to compromise and take out the language that directly referenced following the Kyoto protocols.”
Nickels says a lobbyist from the White House is at the conference trying to kill his resolution. “Clearly, they were concerned about this,” Nickels said.
Seattleites should give props to the Mayor of Atlanta, GA. Nickels is not on the Environment Committee, and evidently Atlanta’s Mayor Shirley Franklin took up Nickels’s case on the committee and did a stand out job.