George W. Bush to address wind energy conference

Kate Sheppard at Mother Jones wrote about this yesterday.

Bush, as Texas governor, signed legislation in 1999 that created new renewable energy requirements for utilities in that state. And as president, his administration promoted the idea that wind could supply a fifth of U.S. power by 2030.

Bush also signed a major 2005 energy bill that established an Energy Department loan guarantee program for low-emissions power projects, although the program was slow to take flight and no guarantees were issued until the Obama administration took office.

But he also threatened to veto a big 2007 energy bill if it contained what was – and remains – a top wind industry priority: A renewable electricity standard that requires utilities nationwide to supply escalating percentages of their power from sources like wind, solar and biomass energy. The provision, which also faced large Senate hurdles, was dropped from the bill before it cleared that chamber en route to becoming law.

Bush also opposed capping greenhouse gas emissions, which many renewable energy advocates call crucial to boosting wind power and other non-emitting energy sources.