President Obama Calls For New Course on Energy

from Wildlife Promise

U.S. Capitol (via Flickr's Krossbow)

In last night’s State of the Union address, President Barack Obama called on Congress to put America on a new energy path:

  • Eliminate taxpayer handouts to oil companies
  • Fund the clean energy “Apollo projects of our time”
  • Have 80 percent of America’s electricity to come from clean energy sources by 2035, including renewable energy such as wind and solar.

How popular are those proposals across political lines? An eye-popping 91% of speech-watchers told CBS they approve of the proposals made in the State of the Union address.

Larry Schweiger, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, applauded the energy plans:

We are encouraged by the president’s commitment to work with Congress to chart a new course on energy. The president’s unexpected proposal will no doubt revive the prospects of bipartisan cooperation and could reshape America’s energy future for the better.

Many Republicans and Democrats chose to sit side-by-side this year. That symbolism should set the tone for the new Congress as it tackles our environment and energy challenges. Americans want bipartisan cooperation that leads to a cleaner, safer, more secure environment for our children and grandchildren. [...]

We are also pleased that the president pledged that he ‘will not hesitate’ to protect commonsense safeguards that ensure our air is safe to breathe. A vital part of our clean energy future is protecting the Clean Air Act. Congress and the president will need to fend off political pressure from polluters to weaken a law that works and works well.

However, Larry pointed out one item that was missing from the speech:

One topic that was not mentioned tonight is the significant work that remains to be done in response to the Gulf oil disaster. This disaster demonstrated in painful terms how years of lax regulations and oversight can have disastrous consequences for the environment and the economy. We call on the White House and Congress to finish the job of restoring the Gulf to its grandeur and implement the findings of the Gulf commission.

At WhiteHouse.gov, you can read or watch President Obama’s State of the Union address.

What did you think of the speech? Leave us a comment.