Dean Criticizes Republicans’ Rejection of a Renewable Portfolio Standard

Democratic Presidential Candidate Governor Howard Dean, M.D. (D-Vermont), issued a statement criticizing House and Senate Republicans for their opposition to renewable energy in the energy bill conference. Dean specifically criticized the Republican-led effort that stripped the energy bill of a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) that would have required U.S. utilities to derive 10 percent of their energy from renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, biomass, geothermal, etc. So far, no other candidates have released statements concerning this recent exclusion of a RPS.

Burlington, Vermont – October 14, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] Democratic Presidential Candidate Governor Howard Dean, M.D. (D-Vermont), issued a statement criticizing House and Senate Republicans for their opposition to renewable energy in the energy bill conference. Dean specifically criticized the republican-led effort that stripped the energy bill of a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) that would have required U.S. utilities to derive 10 percent of their energy from renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, biomass, geothermal, etc. So far, no other candidates have released statements concerning this recent exclusion of a RPS. Dean’s comments follow: “In 2002, President Bush told us, ‘We need an energy bill which will encourage the use of renewable energy. We can do that.’ We can, but Bush’s allies in Congress are making sure it doesn’t happen. “Despite pleas from a bipartisan group of 53 senators, the Republican leaders of the House-Senate conference have eliminated a provision to require that our nation generate 10 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020. Countries like Denmark and Holland already produce almost 20 percent of their electricity from renewable sources like wind, solar and biomass. The U.S. used to lead the world in this kind of technology, now we are falling behind. “We need to make a serious investment in renewable energy. It’s important for our security, it’s important for our environment and it’s important for our economy. We should be aiming even higher–for a 20 percent standard by 2020. Unfortunately, just as with the Bush-Cheney energy plan, Republicans are letting industry lobbyists write this energy bill behind closed doors without input from Democrats or even moderate Republicans. One industry lobbyist called this bill ‘the mother lode.’ “I believe that we should be writing an energy bill that will provide a ‘mother lode’ of clean, secure, renewable energy for our children, not a ‘mother lode’ of fat profits for people like Ken Lay. That is why I will continue to call for the Senate to hold Governor Leavitt’s nomination as EPA chief until this Administration and its allies drop this terrible energy bill and agree to work with Democrats to write a bill worth passing.”
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