Friday, October 26, 2007

Energy Bill 2007 - We Must Act Before It's Too Late

If you care about America's environmental future and reducing our reliance on oil (and having the kind of energy security that would serve to avoid the kind of war we're seeing in Iraq today), then you need to ensure that the final Energy Bill that will soon be going to President Bush will include the Senate-passed 35 mile-per-gallon fuel economy standard along with the House-passed 15 percent renewable electricity standard. You should consider anything else unacceptable. We don't have another ten years to get it wrong then start over.

The 35 mpg fuel economy standard, an increase from the current 27 mpg average, would require that the use of biofuels climb to 36 billion gallons by 2022; it would set penalties for gasoline price-gouging; and it would give the government new powers to investigate oil companies' pricing.

Benefits that would come with passing the 15 percent renewable electricity standard would be lower electric bills, cleaner air, and more homegrown energy.

These practical initiatives woukd save each American family money on the cost of gasoline and electricity, create new jobs, and reduce America's global warming pollution.

Urge Congress to Pass a Strong Clean Energy Bill!

The Sierra Club, U.S. PIRG, National Audubon Society, and Physicians for Social Responsibility have launched an ad outlining seven key principles for new global warming and energy policies. These principles are meant to set a standard for Congress as it moves forward with landmark energy and global warming legislation to ensure bills they pass actually make real and verifiable progress on stabilizing the climate, improve the economy, keep and create jobs, benefit the public and reform the energy sector.

Reform energy policy: New national energy policies should encourage efficiency, innovation, competition, and fairness. We need more aggressive energy efficiency policies for electricity and buildings, increased CAFE standards like those passed by the Senate, and the renewable electricity standard included in the House energy bill.

Promote a clean energy future: Invest in energy efficiency and renewable energy to create new industries and good jobs here at home.

Cap and cut carbon emissions to science-based levels: Science tells us in order to prevent the worst impacts of global warming we must start cutting global warming pollution by 2012, with reductions in total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions of at least 15 to 20 percent below current levels by 2020 and 80 percent by mid-century.

Use all public assets for public benefit: The value of carbon permits should benefit the public--through auctions or other mechanisms--not generate windfalls for polluting industries. Free allocations, if any, must be limited to a short transition period.

Ensure a just transition: Allowances should be used to help finance a just transition that keeps and creates jobs, reduces impacts on low-and moderate-income citizens, and mitigates harm to affected workers and communities.

Provide aid to adapt to an altered climate: Allowances should be used to help distressed and impoverished people around the world, as well as wildife and ecosystems in the face of global warming’s varied threats.

Manage costs without breaking the cap. "Safety valves" and other devices that break the cap on emissions must not be allowed. Any offsets must be real, surplus, verifiable, permanent, and enforceable.

Sierra Club (pdf)

Send a letter to the editor: Congress can't slow down on clean energy.

Listen to Chief Oren Lyons, Faithkeeper of the Turtle Clan, Onondaga Nation, who is my neighbor and a prominent citizen here in Onondaga County and who has long been a leader on environmental issues. He says that the nations of the world must mobilize now to deal with global warming by changing human habit of reliance on fossil fuels. He stresses that we must change our values if we are to survive. The Energy 2007 Bill would show that we are willing to begin to walk the path of values-change.

Urge Congress to Pass a Strong Clean Energy Bill!


Anonymous said...

I'm not convinced about this global warming business. I think a lot of it is media hype. Whatever happened to bird flu? That was another thing we were supposed to worry about.

Jude Nagurney Camwell said...

Thanks for stopping in, Ken. I haven't covered bird flu, so I don't know what the status is.

About climate change, take a look at this video asking "What's the worst that could happen?" at this URL. I'm no scientific expert...but I found the message to be quite persuasive.

Stop by again,

Lorna said...

Hi Jude,

Thanks for the clear outline of the 2 provisions CAFE and RES that need to be adopted without compromise in the new Energy Bill.

I also want to mention that supporters of fuel efficiency have started a group on Facebook where you can meet other folks that also want a clean energy future:

Energy Bill 2007 Group on Facebook

Here's a link to my post about the matter as well:

Energy Bill 2007: Why CAFE and RES matter



Patty Ann Smith said...

EXCELLENT post, Jude. And, I hope no one misses the video with Chief Oren Lyons, a truly great spiritual leader and environmental teacher.

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