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The Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming addressed our nation's energy, economic and national security challenges during the 110th and 111th Congresses.

This is an archived version of the committee's website, where the public, students and the media can continue to access and learn from our work.

Markey: Energy Bill Will Unleash Renewable Revolution


Contact:  Select Committee, 202-225-4081

Markey: Energy Bill Will Unleash Renewable Revolution

Congressman Worked to Protect Georges Bank, Increase LIHEAP Funding

WASHINGTON (September 16, 2008) -- Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) today hailed the expected passage of a comprehensive energy measure that will lower costs to consumers and American taxpayers, invest in renewable energy sources to create American jobs, expand domestic energy supply and create greater energy efficiency and conservation. Rep. Markey, as Chairman of the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, fought to include important provisions for more efficient buildings, plug-in hybrid vehicles, low-income heating assistance, and protections for the important New England fishing region of Georges Bank.

“This is the culmination of a Congress dedicated to strengthening our nation’s energy policy,” said Rep. Markey. “This legislation, along with the energy bill we passed nearly a year ago, will make our buildings, cars, trucks, and appliances more efficient, and unleash a renewable revolution that will reinvigorate our stagnant economy.”

Among its provisions, the Comprehensive American Energy Security & Consumer Protection Act would roll back Big Oil tax breaks in a time of record oil company profits and require oil companies to pay royalties already owed to taxpayers; invest in wind, solar and natural gas, and 21st century energy sources to create millions of jobs; responsibly open up additional offshore areas for drilling with oil companies footing the bill instead of taxpayers; and release oil from the government’s stockpile to bring down gas prices.

“After eight years of a Bush-Cheney-Big Oil energy plan, it is time for an oil change,” said Rep. Markey today on the House floor in support of the bill. “It’s time to change our dependence on foreign oil and OPEC. It’s time to change from the dirty fossil fuels of the past to the renewable energies of the future. It’s time to change to invest in wind and solar. It’s time to change to start building green to save families money. The Republicans like to say ‘drill, baby drill,’ but for our nation’s energy policy the American public is saying it’s high time we started saying ‘change, baby, change.’”

Rep. Markey also worked to include key provisions for Massachusetts, New England, and the nation in this package. He ensured that Georges Bank would be off-limits to drilling, protecting New England’s important fishing industries; and he pushed for more funding for LIHEAP heating assistance programs; and for an increase in incentives for plug-in hybrid vehicles, which will save consumers money and cut pollution.

Saving Georges Bank is vital to New England’s economy. The greater Northeast region fishery landings are valued at approximately $800 million dockside, of which a large proportion is produced on Georges Bank. New Bedford, MA is by far the most productive fishing port in the United States, in terms of value of catch. The city’s $268 million catch in 2007 was nearly twice the value of the second and third most valuable fishing ports combined. The collective catch of New Bedford, Gloucester, and Provincetown-Chatham -- all of which principally fish Georges Bank -- accounts for 9 percent of the value of the entire U.S. annual catch, or nearly $350 million.

“This bill protects low-income families from painful ‘heat-or-eat’ decisions this winter, encourages the manufacture of the next generation of vehicles, and protects vital areas like Georges Bank from offshore drilling” said Rep. Markey.

The New Direction Congress has taken critical steps to address our nation’s energy independence. Last year, Congress passed and the President signed historic energy legislation with provisions to combat oil market manipulation, increase vehicle fuel efficiency to 35 miles per gallon in 2020 – the first Congressional increase in more than three decades – and promote the use of more affordable American biofuels.

When the emissions savings are combined, the energy bill expected to pass today and last December’s energy legislation will cut U.S. global warming emissions by a third of what scientists say is needed to save the planet, by 2030.

For more information on the Comprehensive American Energy Security & Consumer Protection Act, click here.

PLEASE NOTE: The House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming was created to explore American clean energy solutions that end our reliance on foreign oil and reduce carbon pollution.

The Select Committee was active during the 110th and 111th Congresses. This is an archived version of the website, to ensure that the public has ongoing access to the Select Committee record. This website, including external links, will not be updated after Jan. 3rd, 2010.

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