Senate Energy Bill Disappoints on Global Warming

Senate Energy Bill Disappoints on Global Warming


Nick Berning, 202-222-0748

Senate Energy Bill Disappoints on Global Warming

WASHINGTON–Friends of the Earth President Brent Blackwelder issued the following statement in response to last night’s passage of the Senate energy bill:

“The Senate energy bill is a major disappointment. The bill takes baby steps toward halting global warming when giant leaps are required and possible.

“The bill doesn’t set minimum requirements for the use of wind and solar energy, it doesn’t cut billions in unnecessary subsidies for big oil, and its biofuels provisions lack environmental safeguards, and could result in deforestation that makes global warming worse. This legislation barely moves the ball forward in getting the country to the 80 percent cut in global warming emissions by 2050 that scientists say is necessary to avoid catastrophe.

“The legislation includes a few improvements to our energy policy, such as increased efficiency requirements for federal buildings and new automobile fuel economy standards. But those improvements could hardly be called a serious approach to global warming. The fuel economy standards, for example, increase efficiency from 25 to 35 miles per gallon by 2020, but plug-in hybrid technology that can get 100 miles per gallon exists today. Plus, the new fuel economy standards can be waived by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“If this is the best that the Senate can achieve, it may be best for the nation to let the states lead. We hope that Speaker Pelosi and her team will take a bolder approach as the House considers its energy policy in coming weeks.”