Energy & Environment

An easier way to be green

Following his trip to China, Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) noted the country's massive resource commitment to clean technology and our nation's "appallingly little" investment.  Indeed, the global race to become greener, smaller and better has reached a fevered pitch and while policymakers are focused on large-scale changes, they shouldn’t overlook the low-hanging fruit.

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The Big Question: Will anyone from BP be prosecuted over spill?

Some of the nation's top political commentators, legislators and intellectuals offer insight into the biggest question burning up the blogosphere today. ...

Today's question:

BP is under criminal investigation for the Gulf Coast oil spill. Is there a real chance that BP workers will go to jail?



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The Murkowski resolution: A step backward for American clean energy

In the last 18 months, the United States has taken major steps forward in the transition to a clean energy economy. With historic investments in solar, wind and other innovative renewable energy sources, we are positioned to compete for the clean energy jobs of today and tomorrow, to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and to cut the pollution that harms our families and the future for our children and grandchildren.

With all those steps forward, now is not the time to take a big step backward, by doubling down on the kinds of energy and environmental policies that keep America addicted to oil -- especially foreign oil. As the President has said, traditional sources of energy have to be part of the mix as we transition to a clean energy economy, but they can't be our only sources.

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New energy taxes will kill jobs, increase foreign dependence

The president's call yesterday for billions of dollars in new taxes on American oil and natural gas producers is not new, and is not good energy or economic policy. While many reports characterize this initiative as taxing Big Oil, it is not. Regrettably, this Administration continues to fail to recognize that this enormous tax burden would hit America's small, independent producers especially hard. The combination of increased taxes and halting offshore exploration seems like the worst option for the President to choose at this time. Our policies should encourage responsible, American energy production, not shutting down the industry altogether.

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The Big Question: Will the Gulf spill change the energy debate?

Some of the nation's top political commentators, legislators and intellectuals offer their insight into the biggest question burning up the blogosphere today.

 ...

Today's question:


Will the Gulf Coast oil disaster bolster the political will to pass a comprehensive energy bill?

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Vitter calls on Obama to replace deepwater rig shutdown with immediate safety inspections

Dear President Obama,

I am very concerned about the recently announced shutdown of deepwater rigs for a minimum of six months. I urge you to replace this moratorium with immediate rig safety inspections.

Under this alternative, the approximately 33 affected deepwater rigs in the Gulf would receive immediate rigorous safety inspections. They would be shut down if inspections identified safety problems, but not otherwise.

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Carp catastrophists come up empty handed

Despite compounding costs and 11,000 fish killed, no evidence of Asian carp breaching existing barriers has been found.  Now it’s time to start looking at the facts.

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Sens. Schumer, Wyden urge BP to suspend shareholder dividends in letter to CEO

Dear Mr. Hayward,

We write to you out of concern that you will be announcing a dividend to your shareholders prior to fully covering the cost of the cleanup for the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Today, several media outlets are reporting that you are expected to hold a conference call this week pledging to maintain BP’s dividend.

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Disapproval resolution: June 2010 (Sen. Lisa Murkowski)

Transitioning to a cleaner energy future is one of the greatest challenges we face. Many of us in Congress are working on common-sense solutions that both protect the environment and strengthen the economy. We understand that losing sight of that delicate balance would have devastating consequences.

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The Big Question: Is probing BP a good move right now?

Some of the nation's top political commentators, legislators and intellectuals offer their insight into the biggest news of the day. ...

Federal authorities are launching a criminal investigation into the Gulf Coast oil disaster.
Is this the right move?

Background reading here.

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