Today U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tom Carper (D-DE), Tom Udall (D-NM) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) introduced the Oil Independence for a Stronger America Act today in an effort to eliminate dependence on foreign oil by 2030 and create a National Council on Energy Security that would be charged with providing recommendations to the President and Congress to ensure America’s energy goals are met. More specifically the act calls for more production and use of electric vehicles, increase in travel options (more public transportation including high-speed trains), infrastructure improvements, development of alternative transportation fuels and reduce the use of oil to heat buildings.
“America’s dependence on oil from the Middle East, Nigeria, and Venezuela makes us increasingly vulnerable to economic and national security risks,” said Merkley. “American entrepreneurs and workers have the ingenuity and grit necessary to break this addiction to foreign oil – the challenge is whether politicians in Washington are willing to choose American strength over vulnerability.”
With all of the proposed pieces of alternative energy legislation that have been introduced and voted on over the past few weeks, as an aside, I thought I would provide a bit of education on how a bill becomes a law. Remember, School House Rock?
Now that you know how the process works, let’s see what the industry is saying.
Michael McAdams, President of the Advanced Biofuels Association said, “This legislation authored by Senators Carper, Merkley and Bennet is precisely the way our nation must rethink, and how Washington must confront, our energy challenges. By resisting the past temptations of picking a winner, the bill instead offers a comprehensive approach that focuses on the future of all biofuels, including advanced drop-in, algae, and cellulosic fuels to deliver as many gallons to back out foreign oil as quickly as possible.”
He concluded, “Developing renewable energy alternatives is an inevitable part of our shared global future and America should help lead the way. This bill puts us on the road to doing just that by encouraging the development of a robust and thriving domestic advanced biofuels market.”
The Oil Independence for a Stronger America Act would reduce oil consumption in the U.S. by over 8 million barrels per day by 2030, enough to end the need for oil imports from beyond North America.