Democratic governors lead the way on energy security
Feb 24,2007 00:00 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources

They urge Bush to follow their example

Democratic governors today issued an urgent call to President Bush to work with them to make energy independence a reality. Democratic Governors Association (DGA) Chair Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius sent a letter to the President urging him build on Democratic governors' work to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. The letter illustrates the record of success shared today at the Democratic governors' roundtable discussion chaired by Gov. Sebelius.

"Democratic governors are consistently and innovatively taking decisive action, leading the way by promoting alternative sources of energy, encouraging conservation, and demanding efficiency," Gov. Sebelius wrote. "If the President looks to our states, he will see how we are decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, and consequently, increasing our energy security and creating more jobs," she said.

Since President Bush took office, oil consumption has skyrocketed, consumers are spending record amounts for energy, and his Administration has not acted to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. U.S. imports of foreign oil have risen from 6 percent of consumption during the Clinton Administration to 65 percent. The federal government was on the path to reduce its petroleum consumption by 20 percent below 1999 levels and use alternative fuels in a majority of its vehicular fleet. However, consumption has increased 1.3 percent and none of the 21 federal agencies have converted a majority of their vehicles to use alternative fuels.

By contrast, Democratic governors are getting results as they move us closer toward energy independence. Several of them are converting state vehicles to hybrids, elevating energy efficiency standards at state facilities, increasing investments in alternative energy and, at the same time, balancing budgets.

Gov. Sebelius concluded, "Democratic governors have much to offer on the path toward energy independence. We stand ready to work with you - along with Congress - to build on our successes at the state level. Together, we can make America more prosperous, more secure, and less dependent on foreign oil."