Frankly I find it amazing that one of the responses to this crisis is a resolution that would increase America’s oil dependence by billions of barrels.  Senator Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiDemocrats worried about Trump's growing strength The Hill's Morning Report — AG Barr, GOP senators try to rein Trump in Overnight Defense: Senate votes to rein in Trump war powers on Iran | Pentagon shifting .8B to border wall | US, Taliban negotiate seven-day 'reduction in violence' MORE is asking the Senate to approve a resolution that would stop dead in its tracks efforts to cut the oil consumption of cars and trucks sold in America.   

Senator Murkowski is right when she says that Congress needs to act.  She is wrong when she says that we need to adopt a Resolution of Disapproval and a weak energy bill. Instead, we need a comprehensive energy law that will generate millions of new jobs, improve our national security, and stem the flow of dangerous pollution into our environment.  We need a new energy future for America based on dramatic improvements in energy efficiency, a major investment in renewable and nuclear power, and a price on carbon pollution that will spur new jobs and new investments.   

Let’s be clear.  Big Oil, which brought us the unfolding Gulf disaster, strongly supports Senator Murkowski’s resolution of disapproval. 

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America needs to chart a new energy future.  The scientific case is overwhelming.  

EPA, acting under clear court orders as required by the Clean Air Act, issued an endangerment finding, saying that carbon dioxide pollution threatens our future.  Following the laws enacted by Congress and as a direct result of the endangerment finding, EPA has taken preliminary steps to stem these dangerous pollutants from mobile sources including cars and trucks.  

Just two months ago, EPA and the Department of Transportation completed standards to decrease the oil consumption of Model Year 2012-2016 cars and light trucks sold in the US.  Those standards will result in vehicles that will use 1.85 billion barrels less than current models. 

On May 21, President Obama directed EPA and DOT to follow up over the next two years with standards for trucks and buses starting with Model Year 2014, and for cars and light trucks starting with Model Year 2017.  Those follow-on standards will further reduce US oil consumption by billions of barrels. 

But the Murkowski resolution would compel EPA to rescind its portion of the completed standard and prevent the agency from taking part in the follow-on ones.  Removing EPA from the equation would take away the steep penalties for noncompliance set forth in the Clean Air Act.   

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We are seeing in the Gulf today what happens when regulatory enforcement is too weak to to deter risky behavior.  The American people are forced to pay the price.   

The Murkowski resolution ignores scientific evidence and reverses court-ordered action.  It would put EPA on the bench.  The certain result would be to forfeit one quarter – or 455 million barrels – of the oil savings of the standards completed in April and at least one quarter – amounting to billions of barrels – of the oil savings of the follow-on standards that the President announced on May 21. 

Not surprisingly, Big Oil is trying to disguise their resolution as something other than it is.

They claim that it is necessary to prevent EPA from directly regulating the greenhouse gas emissions of small businesses and even homes and farms.  But that assertion is simply wrong.  

The facts are clear.  EPA has already issued a final rule to shield small businesses, homes, farms, and all other small sources from regulation for at least the next six years.  Six years is more than enough time to pass a law making the exemption for small sources permanent.   

The resolution of disapproval has just one certain outcome – It would eliminate the legal foundation of the EPA oil-savings standards.     

When the resolution comes to the Senate floor, it will be time to decide – whose side are you on?  I choose to stand for a new energy future and not with Big Oil.  I ask my colleagues to join me.