President Bush Signs Energy Bill To Improve Fuel Economy And Reduce Oil Dependence
Today, President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which will improve vehicle fuel economy and help reduce U.S. dependence on oil. The bill the President signed today responds to the challenge of his bold “Twenty in Ten” initiative, which President Bush announced in January. It represents a major step forward in expanding the production of renewable fuels, reducing our dependence on oil, and confronting global climate change. It will increase our energy security, expand the production of renewable fuels, and make America stronger, safer, and cleaner for future generations.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 will help reduce America’s dependence on oil by:
- Increasing the supply of alternative fuel sources by setting a mandatory Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) requiring fuel producers to use at least 36 billion gallons of biofuel in 2022. Although the President proposed a more ambitious alternative fuels standard in his State of the Union Address, the RFS in the bill he signed today represents a nearly five-fold increase over current levels.
- Reducing U.S. demand for oil by setting a national fuel economy standard of 35 miles per gallon by 2020 “ which will increase fuel economy standards by 40 percent and save billions of gallons of fuel. Last January, the President called for the first statutory increase in fuel economy standards for automobiles since they were enacted in 1975, and the bill he signed today delivers on that request. The bill also includes an important reform the President has called for that allows the Transportation Department to issue “attribute-based standards,” which will ensure that increased fuel efficiency does not come at the expense of automotive safety.
By addressing renewable fuels and CAFE standards, this bill will build on progress made by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 in setting out a comprehensive energy strategy for the 21st century. The Energy Policy Act signed by the President in August 2005 represented the first major energy security legislation in more than a decade. The Act encourages energy conservation and efficiency by promoting residential efficiency, increasing the efficiency of appliances and commercial products, reducing Federal government energy usage, modernizing domestic energy infrastructure, diversifying the Nation’s energy supply with renewable sources, and supporting a new generation of energy-efficient vehicles.
The Bill Signed Today Will Add To The President’s Ongoing Efforts To Enhance Energy Conservation And Efficiency
The bill includes provisions to improve energy efficiency in lighting and appliances, as well as requirements for Federal agency efficiency and renewable energy use that will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For example:
- The bill will require all general purpose lighting in Federal buildings to use Energy Star® products or products designated under the Energy Department’s Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) by the end of Fiscal Year 2013.
- The bill will update the Energy Policy and Conservation Act to set new appliance efficiency standards that will save Americans money and energy. The Act amends the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) to prescribe or revise standards affecting regional efficiency for heating and cooling products, procedures for new or amended standards, energy conservation, energy efficiency labeling for consumer electronic products, residential boiler efficiency, electric motor efficiency, and home appliances.
- The bill will establish an Office of High-Performance Green Buildings (OHPGB) in the U.S. General Services Administration. This office will promote green building technology implementation in Federal buildings.
The Bill Responds To The President’s “Twenty In Ten” Vision And Will Produce Some Of The Largest CO2 Emission Cuts In Our Nation’s History
Taken together, all of these measures could reduce projected CO2 emissions by billions of metric tons.
- These results help advance the U.S. commitment at the UN climate change meeting in Bali last week to pursue quantifiable actions to reduce carbon emissions.
The President Urges Congress To Act On The Remaining Proposals From His Energy Security Agenda
We must continue changing the way America generates electric power through even greater use of cleaner coal technology, solar and wind energy, and clean, safe nuclear power.
We must increase our domestic supply of oil in a prudent and environmentally sensitive way.
The President again urges Congress to pass legislation that opens access to domestic energy sources such as the Outer Continental Shelf and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. He also asks Congress to double the current capacity of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to protect America against disruptions to our oil supply.