The politics of this thing are so murky. If they go this route the big winner is Exelon, and to a lesser extent FirstEnergy.*
Of course, it would do nothing substantive, beyond raising electricity prices for some utility customers.**
As far as climate goes, I've forgotten if the number is 0.001 or 0.0001 degree Celsius.
From the New York Times:
The Obama administration and a key player in Senate climate negotiations would consider a bill that caps greenhouse gas emissions from just the electric utility sector, which may face better political odds than an effort to cap emissions across the economy.
President Obama will likely discuss setting caps on the utility sector when he meets with senators this week, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel told the Wall Street Journal on Friday.
"The idea of a 'utilities only' [approach] will also be welcomed," Emanuel said, noting that "a wide range of ideas will be discussed." Obama is scheduled to meet with a bipartisan group of senators Wednesday as Democratic leadership plans its strategy for bringing an energy and climate package to the floor this summer.
Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) -- who is co-sponsoring a Senate climate and energy bill with Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) -- said he would also consider a power plant-only cap....MORE
*"Hilarity: Exelon's PECO Subsidiary Rev's Down Because of "Unfavorable Weather" (EXC)"
...From EXC's 2nd quarter ('09) slide-show (p.3):** Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.
Lowest carbon intensity in the sector - $1.1 billion(2) and growing annual upside to Exelon revenues from implementation of Waxman-Markey legislationFrom a letter to NRG shareholders during the takeover attempt:
(2) Assumes $15/tonne carbon pricing.
We are offering you securities in a company… whose value rises rather than declines as carbon is priced into the marketplace…Talk about having a vested interest in the legislation!