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Issue Position: Energy and Environment

Issue Position

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Protecting our environment and passing laws that promote clean energy, combat global climate change, and lower consumers' energy costs will continue to be top priorities of mine in the 112th Congress. South Florida is home to some of America's most beautiful environmental treasures, including our pristine beaches and the Everglades. These natural resources are the foundation of Florida's economy, and for that reason, I have long advocated for immediate investments in renewable energy instead of expanding drilling off our coasts. No disaster in recent history has highlighted the importance of environmental stewardship than the recent Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico. I believe that with properly executed federal oversight and modernized safety standards, we can stop these entirely preventable disasters from wreaking havoc on our environment and our economy.

As consumers suffer from high gas prices and oil companies boast record-breaking profits, I have fought to end subsidies for the oil industry that cost taxpayers billions of dollars. Despite increases in domestic oil production, Americans will remain vulnerable to fluctuations in the global oil market until we transition to renewable technologies. According to the Energy Information Agency, even if the United States were to drill to full capacity, only a few cents would be knocked off the price at the pump by 2020.

The future of America's energy security does not lie with oil, but instead renewable technologies poised to deliver long term savings to consumers and create millions of new green jobs. That is why I voted against the Republican budget, which retains billions in taxpayer giveaways for oil companies but eliminates federal investments in alternative energies. Federally guaranteed loans, research grants, and programs that link energy companies with private capital have been instrumental in jumpstarting the emerging green energy industry. At a time when 15 million Americans are out of work, now is the time to create new jobs in solar power, ocean current technology, biofuels, and other fields.


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