Statement in Response to White House Opposition to the Climate Security Act

June 2, 2008


Tony Kreindler, EDF, 202-572-3378 or 202-210-5791 (cell)

From Steve Cochran, Environmental Defense Fund Climate Campaign Director:

The White House today put itself on a road to the wrong side of history by opposing a bipartisan bill that will fight climate change, reduce our oil dependence, and restore America’s competitiveness.  
They might as well have said, ‘Let’s do more of what we’ve been doing for the economy and the environment. We think its working really well.’ 
We urge the Senate to choose a better path.
The question for Senators now is whether they stand with those defending the status quo of failed environmental and economic policies, or whether they plan to answer the call of Americans who want real action on climate change and a real solution to rising gas prices.
In opposing the Climate Security Act being debated in the Senate this week, the White House today complained that the cost of gasoline could go up 53 cents over the next 22 years if we finally deal with climate change. They apparently missed the fact that under our current oil-addicted energy policy, gas went up $1.10 in just five months last year – and continues to climb.
The only answer to high gas prices is to break our over-dependence on oil, which is exactly what the Climate Security Act will do. Analysis based on data from MIT shows that the Climate Security Act would reduce oil imports by at least half a trillion dollars through 2030.

The White House also claims that economic output would be reduced by 7% if we took action to reduce emissions – a number at the very extreme end of all analysis that’s been done. All credible academic studies show we can grow our economy and address climate change at the same time – most saying the impact will be 1% or less over twenty years. 
That’s a far lower cost to our economy than the impact of unchecked climate change.  This is a modest investment we need to make for a problem the President himself has recognized as important.
Environmental Defense Action Fund
Founded in May 2002, Environmental Defense Action Fund is at the forefront of educating legislators about developing new solutions that protect the natural world. Through grassroots and direct lobbying, EDAF amplifies Environmental Defense Fund’s ability to champion laws that are based on science, economic incentives, and, above all, the protection of our environment.