If you're too young to remember acid rain, just know that Republicans once averted a war with Canada over sulfur emissions.
Let's back up for a minute and discuss:
The Political History of Cap and Trade
How an unlikely mix of environmentalists and free-market conservatives hammered out the strategy known as cap-and-trade
* By Richard Conniff
* Smithsonian magazine, August 2009
Donny Shaw at OpenCongress.org asks "Is There a Republican Alternative to Cap and Trade?"
Sure there is, we'll just call it "emissions trading".
Getting all this to work in the real world required a leap of faith. The opportunity came with the 1988 election of George H.W. Bush. EDF president Fred Krupp phoned Bush's new White House counsel—Boyden Gray—and suggested that the best way for Bush to make good on his pledge to become the "environmental president" was to fix the acid rain problem, and the best way to do that was by using the new tool of emissions trading. Gray liked the marketplace approach, and even before the Reagan administration expired, he put EDF staffers to work drafting legislation to make it happen. The immediate aim was to break the impasse over acid rain. But global warming had also registered as front-page news for the first time that sweltering summer of 1988; according to Krupp, EDF and the Bush White House both felt from the start that emissions trading would ultimately be the best way to address this much larger challenge.
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