Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Don't Hold Your Breath

Energy Shortage - New York Times:
The legislative outlook is brighter in the Senate, which has before it the Enhanced Energy Security Act of 2006. The bill has impressive bipartisan sponsorship and incorporates the best features of an earlier (and more cumbersomely named) vehicle called the Vehicle and Fuel Choices for American Security Act. Its stated purpose is to reduce oil dependency, but the strategies and technologies it encourages would also do much to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The bill would require the president to figure out ways to cut oil consumption by 2.5 million barrels — 12.5 percent of current use — by 2016, and cut it in half by 2031. It offers a menu of loans, direct subsidies, tax breaks and other incentives that would encourage the production of fuel-efficient cars as well as gasoline alternatives like cellulosic ethanol. It does not mandate specific improvements in fuel economy standards — a Congressional red flag — yet the goal it sets would get us to the same place.
A bill that actually does something to address the problem? Get real! The minions of special interest and big oil will dilute or kill this before it gets out of committee.
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