Thursday, May 17, 2007

Governor Richardson's Energy Plan : Act Boldy, Act Now

Act Boldly, Act Now

In order to make America a Clean Energy Nation, as I made New Mexico a Clean Energy State, we need a man-on-the-moon program to end our addiction to oil and abate our global warming crisis. And we need to do it must faster and much more boldly that most people are suggesting. Some politicians and some industry people will say we can’t do what I propose – I say we need to change fast or sink slowly. Now is the time for bold actions, clear vision, and complete commitment.

Consider this a call to action, for Congress, the energy industry, and the public. I am calling for a new American revolution – an energy and climate revolution. And I am calling on you to join it.

My Plan:

** Cut oil demand: 50% by 2020 **
We must reduce oil imports from around 65% to 10%. We can reach these goals in part by getting the 100 mile per gallon (mpg) car into the marketplace, push fuel economy standards to 50 mpg by 2020, and set a life-cycle low-carbon fuel standard that reduces the carbon impact of our liquid fuels by 30% by 2020, including increasing use of alternative fuels.

** Change to renewable sources for electricity: 50% by 2040 **
I am calling for a national renewable electricity source portfolio standard of 30% by 2020 – which will rise to 50% by 2040. This is aggressive, but necessary as we start using more electricity for automobiles. I will push for an energy productivity law requiring a 20% improvement in energy productivity by 2020. We could easily save customers $21 billion a year by 2020. Also, my market-based cap and trade program for greenhouse gas emissions will create incentives for the electric and industrial sectors to make significant reductions in their carbon emissions.

** Dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions: 90% by 2050 **
20% by 2020, and 80% by 2040 -- ten years faster than scientists say is necessary, because we must lead the world, and we can’t afford the possibility of backsliding and inaction. We will start with a market-based cap and trade system. Economists say the world can protect itself from drastic climate change at a cost of 1-3% of our economic activity. We can afford to protect the climate. Given the risks of catastrophic climate change, we can’t afford not to.

** Lead by example and restore America as the world’s leader **
We must return to the international negotiating table and support mandatory world-wide limits on global warming pollution. We will work closely with fast-growing nations and, as President, I will cooperate with the European Union, the World Bank, and other allies to help finance the small cost of “doing it right.” I will create a North American Energy Council with Mexico and Canada, which supply about 20% of our oil, and make sure our relations with these neighbors are firm and friendly. As we reduce our demand for foreign oil, we should work with the Persia Gulf nations, and our partners in consuming nations and the United Nations Security Council, to try to create a multilateral system for protecting the Gulf so that within ten years the U.S. presence there could be sharply and safely reduced.

** Get it all done without breaking the bank **
We will raise some revenue from the sales of carbon permits, for example. Further, I will get out the “green scissors” to cut back on wrongly-placed tax subsidies. Over time, this program will yield huge productivity increases in our economy, as well as significant budget savings and revenues. We will create more than ten times as much value in the American economy by reducing our oil imports as we spend to make this program happen.

On energy policy, we need to change fast or sink slowly. We need to act boldly and act now. Defy conventional wisdom and join the revolution -- endorse Governor Richardson bold new agenda for an American energy and climate revolution.

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