Prices Fueling Partisan Politics

Cindy Zimmerman

Higher energy costs were the subject of dueling Earth Day radio addresses by President Bush and the Democratic Party. Bush at NREL
Here’s part of the president’s address, promoting the administration’s energy initiative:

…hydrogen fuel cells, one of the exciting new technologies supported by my initiative. These fuel cells have the potential to revolutionize the way we power our cars by giving us vehicles that will emit no pollution and will be more efficient than gas-powered cars.
My Advanced Energy Initiative will also help improve hybrid vehicles — cars and trucks that run partly on electricity and help drivers save gas. We’re funding research into a new generation of plug-in hybrid vehicles that could be recharged in electrical outlets and could allow many drivers to make their daily commute using no gasoline.
By developing these and other new sources of clean renewable energy like ethanol, we will continue growing our economy, reduce energy prices and protect our environment, and make America less dependent on foreign oil.

NelsonMeanwhile, Florida Senator Bill Nelson spoke for the Democrats, saying the same thing needs to be done, but claiming the administration’s emphasis is on drilling rather than “the tough policy changes needed to make a real difference.”

More hybrid vehicles, and alternative fuels such as ethanol made from cost-effective crops would make a huge difference — and, relatively quickly.
We have the technology to raise the mileage standard for all passenger vehicles to at least 40 miles per gallon. The president has urged only a modest 2 miles-per-gallon increase for light trucks.
We should produce synthetic fuel from coal, with attention to global warming concerns.
We should set a course of developing an engine that is powered by a new source of energy such as hydrogen, which will also be less polluting.

Ethanol, Government