For Immediate Release:
Contact: Maggie Kao, 202-675-2384
Senate Must Follow Through on President's Call for Climate and Energy Bill
Washington, DC: In response to a meeting held by President Obama with a bipartisan group of Senators to discuss climate and energy legislation, the Sierra Club issues the following statement:
Statement of Michael Brune, Sierra Club Executive Director
We are pleased President Obama brought this bipartisan group of Senators together to develop a plan for a climate and energy bill. We will be measuring success on the results that bill can achieve.
We look to the Senate to craft a bill that reduces oil dependence, creates clean energy jobs and reduces global warming pollution. We remain strongly supportive of comprehensive climate and energy legislation. In particular the Sierra Club believes a package must take greater strides to reduce oil consumption and address the root causes of the BP oil disaster. Similarly, a bill should include a strong Renewable Electricity Standard, and investments in clean energy and efficiency that will create jobs and spur economic growth, as well as measures to significantly reduce carbon pollution. A comprehensive package must not result in give-aways to dirty energy companies. We are especially concerned about any efforts to weaken the Clean Air Act or EPA's ability to reduce air pollution and protect public health.
As President Obama has said, it's time to end the cozy relationship Big Oil has with government. The public is learning more about how the oil industry got around environmental and safety regulations in the Gulf. Congress must now set ambitious goals, hold polluters accountable, and craft comprehensive climate and energy legislation that works for America's middle class.
The West Virginia coal mine tragedy and the oil disaster currently unfolding highlight the desperate need for a new clean energy economy that ends our self-destructive addiction to dirty energy. We need to move away from dangerous and deadly energy sources towards greater efficiency and cleaner energy. Every day the Senate fails to pass clean energy and climate policy, we put our economy, our national security and our environment at risk. Now is the time to put America back in control of our energy future with comprehensive clean energy and climate legislation.