Lawmakers Emphasize Solid IP Position Leading up to Copenhagen

Oct 23, 2009

Today, over 60 Democratic and Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives emphasized their support for IP rights by signing onto a bipartisan congressional letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The letter highlighted the importance of protecting IP right in negotiations leading up to an anticipated December climate change agreement in Copenhagen.

The Congress should be commended for their strong support of intellectual property rights, and their active role in helping to ensure that IP is protected in these negotiations. This position helps define what the U.S. will and will not accept in a climate change agreement, and reinforces the U.S. position on IP.  This effort clearly signals continued support for intellectual property rights and the vital role they play in the technology development and diffusion necessary to achieve our energy and environmental goals.

Led by Representatives Rick Larsen (D-WA) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), the letter emphasizes the importance of the global IPR system as a basis for economic growth and technological progress. It notes the need for nations to address the real barriers to the transfer of green technology, such as lack of financing and market access barriers. The lawmakers also highlight recent Congressional action to protect IP in these negotiations while expressing concern over proposals by some developing countries to weaken IP rights for clean technologies. To read the letter in its entirety, click here.

The pro–IP posture taken by Congress and the administration is vital to generating the technologies that will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve our environment. It is wise policy that benefits the economy and helps protect jobs. I thank Reps. Larsen and Blackburn for leading this effort and their clear understanding of the importance of IP to the American economy.

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