Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), On President Obama's Executive Order On Higher-Efficiency Emissions Standards Sought By California, Vermont And Other States
In his first full week in office President Obama already is taking tangible steps to end the Bush Administration's standstill policies on energy and the environment.
The previous administration blocked California, Vermont and 15 other states from implementing new greenhouse gas emission standards, even though career EPA officials supported the states. President Obama now has issued a new science-based review of the states' petition that I am confident will allow these states to take sensible steps forward to protect the public's health and the environment and to lessen our dependence on foreign oil. Past advances in fuel efficiency were successfully introduced in this same way with forward-looking efficiency standards.
In more ways than the environment, this is a breath of fresh air. This also makes clear that we once again have a White House and an EPA that value science and the way science and engineering can help solve some of the nation's most difficult challenges.