Cap and trade is not going to go away. Seen as a cornerstone of the national movement to cut carbon emissions from greenhouse gases, a cap and trade program is expected to have the greatest impact on manufacturers and supply chain partners but no business or individual will be immune from the drive to lower greenhouse gas emissions. Scientific reports detailing life-threatening scenarios of potential climate disaster and irreparable damage to the planet have spurred President Obama and his team to demand action this year on environmental regulations now moving through Congress.
In June, the U.S. House narrowly passed (219 to 211) the green-energy climate bill HR 2454, referred to by press and public as the Cap and Trade Bill. Heated debate has ensued in the Senate which may or may not bring the matter to a vote before the year ends, despite presidential pressure. Senators, particularly those representing agricultural and coal states, are understandably wary of the potential economic repercussions cap and trade could have on already suffering businesses, particularly manufacturers. Although Congress may drag its feet for another year, most analysts agree that cap and trade will eventually become law.
Savvy businesses are already implementing green programs to curb energy use and switch from gas and diesel-powered equipment to clean energy battery and electric-powered material handling equipment. Even small changes like moving from power-chomping forklifts to green battery-powered motorized carts and powered tugs can add up to a significant plus on your carbon emissions balance sheet. Ergonomically-designed electric material handling equipment like DJ Products’ innovative CartCaddies kills two birds with one stone. They respond to government efforts to reduce carbon emissions and increase worker safety. Win-win!