Obstructing At Home And Abroad, Administration And Congressional GOP Holding Back Environmental And Energy Progress, Says Menendez

Obstructing At Home And Abroad, Administration And Congressional GOP Holding Back Environmental And Energy Progress, Says Menendez

Energy bill blocked in Senate as U.S. impedes progress in Bali

Washington - As the Bush Administration continues to be uncooperative at the international climate change conference underway in Bali, Senate Republicans this morning blocked a landmark energy bill at the behest of the oil industry.

Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee with jurisdiction over international environmental agreements and a member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, released the following statement:

"At this moment in history we have the opportunity to start down the path of energy independence and to address climate change. The president and his party have chosen instead to use this moment to obstruct progress.

"Republican Senators had a choice to make: put our nation on track for cleaner energy, less oil consumption and fewer emissions or pad record oil company profits with taxpayer money. They chose oil companies over the American people and the planet.

"They chose taxpayer money for oil companies over tax credits for renewable energy that could help clean the air and wean us off of fossil fuels. They chose taxpayer money for oil companies over an investment in solar energy, which my home state of New Jersey is proving to be a viable and clean source of electricity. Because of their choice, later today we will likely pass an Energy Bill that does not take away oil company subsidies to pay for the expansion of renewable energy.

"Meanwhile, at the conference in Bali, there is the potential to spark a worldwide movement to address our planetary emergency. Sadly, the Bush Administration has shown a stubborn unwillingness to consider the type of bold ideas we need to minimize the catastrophic storms, massive flooding and international instability that are the consequences of climate change. A new direction in our energy and environmental policy has the potential to improve a deteriorating situation, but the president and his party refuse to change course."

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