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Public Statements

New Direction for Energy Independence, National Security, and Consumer Protection Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC


NEW DIRECTION FOR ENERGY INDEPENDENCE, NATIONAL SECURITY, AND CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT -- (House of Representatives - August 04, 2007)

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Ms. PELOSI. I thank the distinguished chairman for yielding time.

Mr. Chairman, today we have an historic opportunity in the House of Representatives. Today we are faced with a momentous decision on energy and global warming. With this bill, we are turning toward the future for the sake of our children and our planet. With this bill, the New Direction for Energy Independence, National Security, and Consumer Protection Act, Congress can indeed take our Nation in a new direction. This is a moment when we can make a decision in favor of the future.

Mr. Chairman, you acknowledged all of the chairmen and chairwomen who have contributed to the success of this legislation that we are bringing forward today, and I want to commend all of them. I want to say that the principles that have been put into this legislation are very important. Our energy independence is a national security issue. It is an economic issue for our country and for America's families. It is an environmental health issue for our children. And it is a moral issue. This beautiful planet is God's gift to us. We have a moral responsibility to preserve it. That is why I am so pleased that so many in the religious community are supporting our actions today.

This bill makes the largest investment in homegrown biofuels in American history. We know that America's farmers will fuel America's independence. We will send our energy dollars to middle America, not to the Middle East.

The bill promotes cleaner and efficient means of transportation, including alternative fuels in busses and ferries and hybrid automobiles in hauling goods around the country.

I have a very long statement about this bill, I'm very enthusiastic about it, and I will use that enthusiasm to submit most of my statement for the Record.

But I do want to acknowledge the important work that Mr. Dingell did on this legislation because in his bill, renewable energy offers a new direction for our country. And what he does is, 10.4 billion tons of dioxide emissions are reduced. That's more emissions than are used by all of the cars on America's highways today. It's very important. And I want to thank Mr. Rangel, who we will hear from later, on the fact that this bill is paid for.

So it's about our national security. We cannot be dependent on foreign oil. As I said, this is God's creation. This issue is as local as our neighborhoods; it is as global as the planet. It is about how we educate our children in this new green economy. It's how we create jobs. And Congressman Miller and Congresswoman Solis will be talking about that in a moment.

The Prophet Isaiah has said, Mr. Chairman, that ``to minister to the needs of God's creation is an act of worship. To ignore that is to dishonor the God who made us.'' I firmly believe from the bottom of my heart that if we do believe that, that we should pass this legislation today. It's about our children, their future, the world in which they live to fulfill their lives, and it's about America being number one and in the lead.

So I urge my colleagues, I promise to submit it for the Record if you promise to read it.

INTRO

My colleagues, today we are faced with a momentous decision on energy and global warming.

Will we turn toward the future, for the sake of our children and our planet? Or will we remain mired in the disputes and regional differences that have so often prevented the Congress from adopting new, innovative approaches to our energy needs?

With this bill, the ``New Direction for Energy Independence, National Security, and Consumer Protection Act,'' Congress can indeed take our nation in a New Direction.

Energy independence is a national security issue, and environmental and health issue, an economic issue, and a moral issue.

As it says in the Bible, ``To minister to the needs of God's creation is an act of worship, to ignore those needs is to dishonor the God who made us.''

This is the moment when we can make a decision in favor of the future, while ministering to the needs of God's creation.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Ten committees have been hard at work for months to develop this legislation, and I salute the leadership of our Chairmen. These committees have held extensive hearings and markups. The Appropriations Committee has also highlighted sustainable energy and global warming in their bills.

As a result, almost every Member of Congress has had the opportunity to participate in this process. Thank you all for your creativity and hard work.

Principles

With broad input, and a commitment to the future, Congress has created this bill with four principles in mind. We must strengthen our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign oil; lower energy costs with greater efficiency, cleaner energy, and smarter technology; create new and good-paying American jobs, and reduce global warming.

And we must do it all in a fiscally sound way.

To fund these key investments in our future, we have demanded greater accountability to the taxpayer from oil and gas companies that drill on Federal lands.

Energy Independence

This bill makes the largest investment in homegrown biofuels in American history. We know that America's farmers will fuel America's energy independence, creating jobs and prosperity across rural America.

This bill will send our energy dollars to middle America and coast to coast; not the Middle East.

This bill promotes cleaner and more efficient means of transportation, including alternative fuel buses and ferries, and hybrid locomotives for hauling goods around the country.

PROTECTING CONSUMERS

With the energy efficiency provisions in this legislation, we will lower costs for American consumers and businesses in key areas, such as electricity, home heating, and cooling--saving Americans more than $300 billion dollars.

With these energy efficiency measures, we will also reduce carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 10.4 billion tons through 2030, more than the annual emissions of all the cars on the road in America today.

This bill is essential to developing renewable energy sources in America. It makes a strong commitment to research and innovation. It extends tax provisions that have provided a strong foundation for our renewable energy industries, provides new incentives, and bolsters research.

Renewable energy offers a new direction for our country by improving energy independence and reducing global warming.

JOBS

As we address energy independence and global warming with innovation and market-based solutions, we will grow our economy and create good paying jobs--including ``green-collar'' jobs.

Because small businesses are the backbone of our economy, this bill ensures small businesses can reap the economic benefits of new energy technologies.

GLOBAL WARMING

The consequences of global warming will be as local as our neighborhoods, and as broad as our entire planet. So too must our solutions be both local and global.

This bill lays out specific steps the Administration should take for the U.S. to resume a constructive role as the global leader in combating global warming.

Here at home, the Federal Government should lead by example. This bill requires the Federal Government to become carbon-neutral by the year 2050, and lays out a number of specific measures that will assist our government to achieve that goal.

States and local communities need to know how to plan for the global warming that is already underway. This bill reorganizes the federal climate change research, so every locality has information it needs to prepare.

It also assists us in tracking the effects of global warming on the oceans and wildlife so we can take steps to protect them.

CONCLUSION

Mr. Chairman, the legislation we debate today is just the ambitious first phase in what will be a series of revolutionary actions for energy independence.

But it is a very serious first step, that honors God's creation--our planet, and creates a better world for our children.

With confidence in American ingenuity and faith in our future, today we can declare a New Direction in our energy policy--one for our future generations. I urge my colleagues to do just that by supporting this bill.


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