Energy and Environment
America’s national security and economic prosperity demand that we take charge of our energy future. We need an energy strategy that reduces our dependence on foreign oil, promotes energy efficiency, encourages the development of American energy technologies and sources, and helps preserve the planet for future generations. Smart energy policy will create jobs in the short-term and make our planet more livable for future generations.
For far too long, our addiction to Middle East oil has resulted in our funding both sides of the war on terror and left us vulnerable to the whims of unstable foreign governments and dangerous dictators. Reforming our energy policy to encourage the discovery and production of home-grown energy sources and technologies will make our nation fundamentally safer and save billions every month in military costs.
Jobs & the Economy
Smart, forward-thinking energy policy that focuses on conservation and renewable fuels will reduce costs for families and businesses and create jobs. Dollar for dollar, investments in a clean energy economy will create four times as many jobs as in the oil and gas industry. In the short term, these investments will create jobs in clean energy research and emerging manufacturing fields for products like wind turbines. In the long term, we will ensure American families and businesses have access to the cheapest, cleanest energy available anywhere in the world, raising our standard of living and making our businesses more competitive.
Accelerating America’s transition to a clean energy economy will spur the next great era of American innovation, but this transition will not occur without fundamentally changing our nation’s energy policies. We must build the foundation for a clean energy economy. That means setting rigorous standards that promote the use of clean energy, providing financial incentives that reward both reduced energy usage and increased reliance on renewable energy, investing in the development of clean energy technologies, and training workers for jobs in areas like weatherization and solar panel installation.
The cheapest energy in the world is the energy we do not use. From insulating buildings to increasing the fuel efficiency of the cars and trucks we drive, we can save energy and dollars. I support rigorous national fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks. With buildings accounting for over 40 percent of our energy use, I have passed legislation that helps finance home retrofits and creates financial incentives for businesses and local governments to invest in “greening” their buildings. In addition to reforming our energy policy, we must also invest in improved efficiency in the other sectors of our infrastructure. I have sponsored legislation to improve access to public transportation and to encourage telecommuting as ways to help reduce our use of fossil fuels.
Protecting our Planet
The connection between our energy policy and the health of our environment is undeniable. Smart public policy promotes both, and America should lead the fight against global climate change—beginning with our energy policy. By creating the right set of financial incentives and supporting a broad range of research and development, we can deliver the energy our economy requires to thrive while protecting our planet.
Focus on our Future
We can’t afford to wait. Demand for energy grows constantly. Every day we allow the status quo to continue, we lose ground in the race to become the nation that will lead the clean energy revolution. As countries around the world race to find alternatives to fossil fuels, we must ensure that America takes a leading role in creating a safe and secure clean energy future.