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by M. Inez Smith
Saturday, Jun. 23, 2007 at 5:23 PM
"The energy bill now before the Senate, far from being any kind of solution to our economic and environmental crises, represents exactly the kind of thinking and legislating that has brought us to the point of crisis in the first place," says Brezenoff.
Long Beach — Green Party candidate for United States Congress Daniel Brezenoff criticizes the new energy bill currently in the Senate.
"The energy bill now before the Senate, far from being any kind of solution to our economic and environmental crises, represents exactly the kind of thinking and legislating that has brought us to the point of crisis in the first place. Mandating 35 mile per gallon vehicles by 2020 is a bit like bailing out the Titanic with Dixie cups, or treating cancer with a Band-Aid. Ethanol is no answer either, as its total carbon output is comparable to that of fossil fuels, and it increases food prices, hurting working people.
What this bill will accomplish is less than nothing; by 2020, the number of new drivers and new cars on the road will ensure that we produce more carbon, not less, than we do now, despite the new fuel standards.
These standards do not even attempt to slow down the pace at which we pollute the air and consume natural resources, let alone reverse the damage. Instead, they ensure that we will continue to consume and pollute at ever increasing levels, and only limit the rate of increase minimally. This bill is evidence that the Democrats have neither the intent nor the ability to address the environmental and economic problems they helped create, and are in fact only slightly less beholden to corporate interests than are Republicans.
We need zero emission vehicles. We need a solar grid. We need public transit. Cars that get 35 miles to the gallon are worse than an empty gesture; they are a false comfort in a time of emergency.
I call upon our representatives to reject this meaningless bill and go back to the drawing board, this time listening not to centrists, appeasers, and lobbyists, but instead to technological innovators and real environmental advocates.
As a member of the House of Representatives, I vow to craft legislation that offers real, sustainable solutions to the severe crises we face. I encourage our current Congressional legislators and all Americans to learn about my proposed "New Deal for Sustainability," which provides a model for sustainable energy production and transportation in the 21st century. And I encourage voters in the 37th district to consider which candidate will provide real leadership on issues related to the environment, energy prices, and transportation when they vote this Tuesday."
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