After much talk and little action, two U.S. senators introduced bipartisan legislation to create a national carbon cap-and-trade program August 2. The measure by Senators Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and John Warner (R-VA), would place a ceiling on greenhouse gas emissions and promote a market for buying and selling carbon emissions. \u201cThe Lieberman-Warner bill will be the fifth economy-wide Senate proposal, and in addition, there are several sector-by sector proposals, demonstrating that an increasing number of U.S. Senators want to address this issue now,\u201d said Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA). The legislation must be approved by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, which is chaired by Boxer. \u201cThis proposal has taken good ideas from a variety of bills, and will be an excellent starting point for the committee,\u201d Boxer stated. The bill is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks and taken up by the full Senate in September. Also the subject of legislation once again is a federal renewable portfolio standard, which is not expected to see the light of day, as well as an eight-year extension of the solar project tax credit. This week, two lawmakers proposed an amendment to the massive energy bill, which seeks to establish a 15 percent renewable energy mandate by 2020. The California Wind Energy Association pushed hard to advance the proposal by Representatives Mark Udall (D-CO) and Todd Platts (R-PA), which also would allow states to exceed the federal minimum renewable energy requirement. Nancy Rader, CalWEA executive director, said the clause specifying the federal renewable energy standard would be a floor instead of a ceiling that would protect California\u2019s renewable portfolio standard. California\u2019s law sets a 20 percent standard for 2010. State legislation is pending that would advance the standard to 33 percent by 2020. \u201cSetting a renewable portfolio standard for the United States is a bold step towards energy independence and a cleaner energy future,\u201d Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX) said of the August 1 RPS amendment to the federal bill. About half the states in the U.S. have renewable energy requirements. Boxer\u2019s committee marked up legislation July 31 that would require the federal Environmental Protection Agency to permit California to implement its greenhouse gas emission limits on vehicles. S 1785 by Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), introduced last week, aims to force the EPA administrator to make a decision on California\u2019s Clean Air Act waiver request made two years ago (Circuit, July 27, 2007). Many other states have passed similar legislation and cannot move ahead until EPA allows California to implement its law. Some expect the EPA to deny California\u2019s request. Meanwhile, a proposed amendment to the 700-page energy bill contained in HR 2927 could undermine California greenhouse gas regulation for motor vehicles. \u201cCalifornia could be crippled by this brazen attempt to pre-empt our state emission standards,\u201d stated California Attorney General Jerry Brown August 1. He accused the auto industry of being behind the measure. Brown joined 13 other state representatives in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) seeking to eliminate the \u201ctroublesome language\u201d that could gut California\u2019s global warming law. In related news, two measures, HR 550 and HR 590, would extend the 30 percent tax credit for solar energy projects, which is currently renewed biannually. They also would remove the $2,000 cap on residential tax credits. \u201cThis is the biggest, most important piece of solar legislation we\u2019ve had in this country yet,\u201d said JP Ross of Vote Solar.