Chairman Markey Responds to the President’s WIREC Speech

Posted on by Jesse Lee

From the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming:

Markey: Bush Renewable Energy Stance–Not Made in the USA
WIREC Speech Highlights Bush Admin. Opposition to Renewable Incentive Programs, Binding Emissions Limits

WASHINGTON (March 5, 2008) — Today President Bush delivered a speech to the Washington International Renewable Energy Conference where he again failed to commit the United States to domestic or international cuts in global warming emissions, and continued the same delaying tactics that will result in continued large emissions on heat-trapping pollution. He also pushed a message of technological development while he continues to actively oppose incentives for renewable energy that would increase the development and use of renewable energy here in America.

The president is opposing the Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act of 2008 (H.R. 5351), which was passed in the House in February and will extend and expand tax incentives for renewable electricity, energy and fuel, as well as for plug-in hybrid cars, and energy efficient homes, buildings, and appliances. These provisions are critical to creating hundreds of thousands of jobs. And the preservation of existing jobs relies on them too: a recent study showed that allowing the renewable energy incentives to expire would lead to about 116,000 job opportunities being lost in the wind and solar industries through the end of 2009.

Along with opposing this renewable energy investment package, the president also worked to strip the Renewable Electricity Standard from the energy bill passed in December.

Below is the statement of Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Chairman of the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming:

“The President claims he is committed to solving global warming, but how can we believe him when he won’t even commit the United States to any binding agreement to cut emissions or support renewable energy programs here in America? His insistence that technology alone will save us is undercut by the President’s refusal to support investment policies that are crucial to the success of renewable technology.

“America must do three things this year to create the market where green technology can thrive. First, it must adopt tax policies that give companies and consumers incentives to use renewable energy. Second, it must pass legislation that will cap and reduce heat-trapping emissions here in the United States, which will re-establish America’s leadership on this issue. Then it must join the international community’s efforts to reduce global emissions of carbon dioxide.

“As valuable as they are, surely this President does not want to be remembered for simply loosening trade barriers on green technology. Surely this president wants his legacy to be that he stood up and said ‘the carbon stops here’ and worked hard in his last year of office to save the planet, not leave the task for his successor. If he supports real action, it will happen.”

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