Oil Spill May Speed Up Energy Legislation
Even though it’s an election year, energy legislation may be pushed up because of the urgency provided by the Gulf oil spill. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he’ll bring legislation to the floor this summer. Oil industry liability rules, drilling safety, and policies that shift us away from oil will be on the agenda. Democrats will meet Thursday to discuss.
Ahead of that session, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) plans to outline proposals Monday for curbing reliance on oil, and will speak on the matter at the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank with deep ties to the White House and influential Democrats.
Other members are preparing new energy plans, too. Sources on and off Capitol Hill say Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) is readying legislation on renewable electricity and biofuels.
Across the aisle, Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) unveiled a plan last week aimed at curbing oil use through various vehicle efficiency and renewable energy provisions.
The biggest opportunity for climate change legislation is right now.
Other ideas abound. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) is pushing a plan backed by several environmental groups that would levy new fees on offshore oil-and-gas leases to fund alternative-energy programs.Click here for reuse options!
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