I introduced my legislation in January and even spoke with President Bush after his State of the Union speech to offer to work with him in cutting our dependence on imported oil. The challenge we face is clear. In order to protect our nation and our environment it is essential we use oil more efficiently and develop a domestic economy revolving around clean alternative fuels.

Our country has become increasingly dependent on oil imports from countries who deny their citizens basic democratic freedoms and, in some cases, sponsor terrorism. In the 1970s, the US imported 1/3 of its oil, and now we import 56 percent. If the trend continues, we will be importing nearly 70 percent of our oil by 2025. It is simply unacceptable for us to do nothing while OPEC gains a stranglehold over our economy and our security. In addition, there is now an irrefutable scientific consensus that global warming is real, it is dangerous and it is caused by greenhouse gas emissions.

We cannot delay action any longer. The longer we wait, the longer we are at risk for an energy security crisis or irreversible global warming.