Clean Energy and Security Act Presents Challenges and Opportunities
for Glass Manufacturers
April 29, 2009
While the recently released American Clean Energy and Security
Act of 2009 (ACES) is geared to create millions of new clean energy
jobs, save consumers hundreds of billions of dollars in energy costs,
enhance America's energy independence and cut global warming pollution,
certain aspects of the legislation have posed concerns for some
in the glass industry; other portions present opportunities.
If passed, the act would require that manufacturers in the glass
industry either absorb the increased cost of carbon emissions (via
cap-and-trade) or the increased cost of having to deal with additional
state and federal regulation.
As part of the cap-and-trade system, manufacturers would be provided
an allowance of annual carbon credits. Those manufacturers who are
below their established emissions would be able to sell or trade
carbon allowances to other companies so that those companies could
produce more carbon than the legally established limit.
Some in the industry say these increased costs could significantly
impact the ability of flat glass manufacturers to do business in
North America, as producers in non-regulated countries, such as
China or India, would not be required to meet the regulation.
Despite the challenge of the cap-and-credit system, the ACES Act
also presents opportunities for the glass industry, which produces
energy-efficient and solar glazing materials. Organizations such
as the Glass Association of North America (GANA) are working to
ensure these products remain a part of the renewable energy portion
of the Act.
"The American Clean Energy and Security Act presents both
a crisis in the form of greenhouse gas regulation and an opportunity
for the flat glass industry due to its unique position as a manufacturer
of the glass used in energy-efficient and solar applications,"
says Bill Yanek, executive vice president of the GANA. "Hopefully,
Congress will strike a balance in not regulating emissions to a
degree that it damages the flat glass industry's ability to deliver
energy efficient and alternative energy glass products."
HERE to read a draft of the ACES Act.
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