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Climate Change

American Clean Energy and Securities Act

In 2009, the House passed an ambitious Obama-backed bill to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but the bill ultimately failed to gain traction in the Senate.


In 2009, then-President Barack Obama backed an ambitious climate bill called the American Clean Energy and Securities Act (ACES). The ACES is also known as the Waxman-Markey bill, named for its sponsors, two representatives at that time, Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Edward Markey (D-MA). The bill would have implemented a cap-and-trade system and imposed restrictions to reduce the U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, it would have developed various clean energy sources as alternatives to fossil fuels. The House narrowly passed the bill in June 2009, 219–212, with 44 Democrats voting against and eight Republicans supporting it. Ultimately, however, the bill died with a thud, as the Senate refused to bring it up for a vote and the Obama administration moved on to its healthcare agenda.