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Press Room:  For Immediate Release 
Explore, Enjoy and Protect the Planet

For Immediate Release
June 16, 2008

Contact: David Willett, 202-491-6919 (mobile)


McCain Energy Plan: Same Old Drilling
New Radio Ad Calls for Support of Clean Energy Legislation

Washington, DC:  In remarks today Senator McCain indicated that in his speech tomorrow in the heart of the fossil fuel industry will focus not on clean energy and fighting global warming but instead on opening America’s coasts to drilling.  “Tomorrow, I'll call for lifting the federal moratorium for states that choose to permit exploration. I think that this -- and perhaps providing additional incentives for states to permit exploration off their coasts --- would be very helpful in the short term in resolving our energy crisis,” said McCain.

Statement of Carl Pope, Executive Director:

“The truth is that drilling our coasts will not solve our energy problems.  Additionally, the federal moratorium exists because one state could jeopardize beaches in neighboring states with risky offshore drilling. An oil spill off the coast of Virginia would impact beaches, marine life, and tourism in New Jersey.  More importantly, lifting the ban would do nothing to reduce gas prices for the average American family.  It would take a decade to bring new leases into production and then they would only line the coffers of the oil industry, which raked in tens of billions of dollars in record profits last year.”

“Oil companies are not even using the nearly 6,000 offshore leases they already own. Issuing new leases is just a license for them to destroy more of our public resources for their own profit, while doing nothing to help ease pain at the pump. Senator McCain has said that he supports fighting global warming and clean energy solutions—more off-shore drilling is antithetical to that approach.  To protect consumers and get us on the path to a clean energy future, Senator McCain should instead support the Consumer-First Energy Bill currently in the Senate.” 

Separately, following an e-mail appeal to Club activists for support, the Sierra Club today began running a radio ad in several Ohio media markets calling attention to Senator McCain’s ironic use of windmills in Ohio TV advertising despite his failure to support renewable energy initiatives in the Senate, and asking him to vote for incentives for wind power and other renewables when they come up on the floor.   

Full Script:  NARRATOR “John McCain is running ads that feature windmills and, truth is, windmills --and the clean energy and jobs they generate have a large role to play in Ohio's future. But not because of anything John McCain has done.  Fact is, John McCain opposes requiring the use of more wind and solar power to generate electricity -- he's argued against incentives for the clean energy industry  while demanding billions in subsidies for nuclear power and refusing to impose windfall profits taxes on Big Oil. Clean energy is key to Ohio's economic future. The Consumer-First Energy bill gives John McCain the chance  to support renewable energy and end subsidies to oil companies. Call Senator McCain at 202-224-3121. Ask him to stop spinning windmills and to start supporting  them and other clean energy technology to help put Ohio back to work. Paid for by the Ohio Chapter of the Sierra Club.”

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