Manchin shuts down climate and tax talks, scales back national plan

“If we can’t move forward as we had hoped, we need to salvage as much of this package as possible,” he added. “The phrase that failure is not an option is overused, but failure really isn’t an option here. »

Leah Stokes, a professor of environmental policy at the University of California, Santa Barbara who has advised congressional Democrats on climate legislation, sobbed Thursday night as she described the months of work she and other activists, scientists and legislative staff had invested in the negotiations.

“The stakes are so high,” she said. “It’s just infuriating that he condemns our own children. »

Many were seething with anger at Mr. Manchin. They criticized him for chaining negotiators, while watering down a package that at one point would have been enough to drastically cut emissions and also adding fossil fuel projects that ran counter to climate goals. In the last few days of talks, tax breaks for clean energy had been cut and Mr Manchin had worked to include approving offshore oil and gas leasing and allowing a fossil fuel project in his state, congressional aides said.

Tiernan Sittenfeld, senior vice president of government affairs at the League of Conservation Voters, a nonprofit group, said Mr Manchin condemned future generations.

“There really are no words, at least words suitable for printing in The New York Times, to say how appalled and outraged we are,” she said.

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