Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Stop using oil! Just say "No."


WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Senate Democrats are prepared to introduce a proposal on Wednesday that would set a goal of cutting U.S. oil imports by 40% from projected levels in 2025 and open a larger debate into how reliant the U.S. should be on foreign supplies of crude oil.

Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., is prepared to offer the proposal, which would require the president to reduce imports by 7.64 million barrels of oil a day by 2025, as an amendment to a comprehensive energy bill being debated on the Senate floor.

Today, the U.S. imports roughly 58% of its oil supplies, and it is estimated that imports will reach 19.1 million barrels of oil a day in 2025 from about 13 million barrels a day today...

The bipartisan energy bill drafted by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and pending before the Senate, however, would give the administration one year to enact a plan to lower U.S. oil demand by 1 million barrels a day, or 4%, from projected 2015 levels...

The Bush administration on Tuesday came out against the 1 million barrel reduction. The administration's apprehensive stems from conventional wisdom that suggests the only way to significantly reduce domestic oil consumption is through a steep increase in the fuel economy standards of automobiles sold in the U.S. since the majority of the oil consumed in the U.S. goes into the transportation sector and vehicle gas tanks.

Usually, I am quite fond of what Cantwell does, she did after all help cut our taxes. But this seems to be rather odd: how can the President make us use less oil?

We do have to reduce our consumption of oil, but I suspect that tax and investment policy, the area in which Congress can act will do more than by having George W. Bush saying "Stop using oil."

Meanwhile, IGE is going gangbusters:

Maybe we could learn from the Brazilians. Yep, even under Lula, they're still not sweating about imported oil.

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